Exports from Germany, Europe’s largest economy, jumped more than twice as much as economists forecast in May as the global recovery gathered pace.
Sales abroad, adjusted for working days and seasonal changes, rose 9.2 percent from April, when they fell 6.3 percent, the Federal Statistics Office in Wiesbaden said today. Economists forecast an increase of 4 percent, the median of 10 estimates in a Bloomberg News survey shows. Imports surged 14.8 percent.
“German exports will rise strongly this year and remain the driver of growth next year as well as demand from emerging economies, especially in Asia, compensates for lower demand in the euro area,” said Joerg Lueschow, an economist at WestLB AG in Dusseldorf. “Later in the year, we will also see positive impulses from a weaker euro.”
Concern about spiraling deficits in euro-region countries has pushed the single currency down 12 percent against the dollar this year, making German-manufactured products more competitive outside the region. The Bundesbank on June 11 raised its German growth forecasts to 1.9 percent for 2010 and 1.4 percent for 2011, citing global demand as the “main driving force” of the recovery.
From a year earlier, German exports rose 28.8 percent in June. Exports to countries outside the European Union surged 39.5 percent, while sales to countries in the region increased 22.8 percent.
Bayerische Motorenwerke AG, the world’s largest luxury automaker, on July 2 forecast it will sell 120,000 cars and sport-utility vehicles in China this year after first-half deliveries doubled. Volkswagen AG, Europe’s biggest carmaker, said on June 16 it expects profits and deliveries to rise “significantly” in 2010.
Germany’s trade surplus narrowed to 9.7 billion euros ($12.3 billion) from 13.1 billion euros in April. The surplus in the current account, a measure of all trade including services, was 2.2 billion euros, down from 11.3 billion euros the previous month.