German Factory Orders Rise as Economic Boom Continues Undaunted

  • Orders increase 1% in March vs. estimated gain of 0.7%
  • Pick-up led by demand from within 19-nation euro region

German factory orders expanded for a second month as Europe’s largest economy picked up speed.

Orders, adjusted for seasonal swings and inflation, rose 1 percent in March, after expanding an upwardly revised 3.5 percent in February, data from the Economy Ministry in Berlin showed on Monday. The typically volatile reading compares with a median estimate for a 0.7 percent gain in a Bloomberg survey. Orders were up 2.4 percent from a year earlier, when adjusted for working days.

The Bundesbank said Germany’s economy probably gathered momentum in the first quarter on the back of strong consumer spending and a brightening outlook for manufacturers. Business confidence is at the highest level in almost six years, and data on Friday is forecast to show that growth accelerated in the three months through March.

“Manufacturing orders continue to be vibrant,” the Economy Ministry said in a statement. “Economic conditions in manufacturing are favorable. This is also reflected by strongly improved business climate indicators.”

Orders were bolstered by demand from the 19-nation euro area, with investment goods up 7 percent in the region and consumer goods surging 20.5 percent.

Economists predict the ministry will report in separate release on Tuesday that industrial production fell 0.7 percent in March after rising 2.2 percent the previous month.

— With assistance by Andre Tartar, and Kristian Siedenburg

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