Tuesday, July 10, 2007

German Trade Balance May

From Bloomberg:

German Exports Unexpectedly Declined in May

German exports unexpectedly fell in May, suggesting that growth in Europe's largest economy may have peaked.

Sales abroad, adjusted for working days and seasonal changes, declined 0.7 percent from April, when they rose 0.9 percent, the Federal Statistics Office in Wiesbaden said today. Economists expected a gain of 1 percent, according to the median of 11 forecasts in a Bloomberg News survey. From a year earlier, exports increased 9.3 percent.

Export growth has slowed after helping power the fastest economic expansion since 2000 last year, reflecting the euro's gains and a cooling global economy. Audi, Volkswagen AG's luxury auto unit, said last week U.S. earnings may fall this year because of the dollar's decline against the European currency.

``The euro could be a burden,'' said Sebastian Wanke, an economist at Dekabank in Frankfurt. ``However, industrial orders rose significantly in May, so the prospects for German exports still appear favorable'' and ``the trade balance still increased.''

Imports fell more than exports, dropping 3.6 percent in May from April, today's report showed. That boosted the trade surplus, adjusted for seasonal changes, to 17.6 billion euros ($23.9 billion) from 15.8 billion euros.

The Munich-based Ifo economic institute on June 25 raised its forecast for German growth this year to 2.6 percent from 1.9 percent. The economy grew 2.8 percent in 2006.


``Obviously we are under a bit of pressure because of the exchange rate,'' Johan de Nysschen, Audi's U.S. chief, said in a July 6 interview. ``We may see a deterioration in our financial results.''

The euro rose to a record against both the yen and the dollar this year and traded at $1.3624 today, 6 percent higher than it was six months ago. Slowing growth in the U.S, the world's largest economy, may also become a drag on foreign sales.

Still, emerging economies in eastern Europe and Asia ``will certainly be able to iron out the odd dip in North America,'' Werner Wenning, chief executive officer of Bayer AG, Germany's second-largest chemical maker, said in a July 5 interview.

Foreign demand drove a 3.2 percent increase in German manufacturing orders in May, beating economists' expectations, a government report showed July 6. Orders for consumer products rose 4 percent and orders for investment goods such as equipment and machinery gained 3.8 percent.

Exports to other euro-region countries rose 8.7 percent in May from a year earlier, today's report showed. Sales to countries outside the European Union rose 7.6 percent in the same period.

And here's the FSO release:

German exports in May 2007: + 9.3% on May 2006

WIESBADEN – According to provisional data of the Federal Statistical Office, Germany exported commodities to the value of EUR 79.1 billion and imported commodities to the value of EUR 61.6 billion in May 2007. German exports of May 2007 were thus 9.3% and imports 3.4% above the respective May 2006 levels. Upon calendar and seasonal adjustment, exports decreased by 0.7% and imports by 3.6% on April 2007.

The foreign trade balance showed a surplus of EUR 17.5 billion in May 2007. In May 2006, the surplus amounted to EUR 12.8 billion. Upon calendar and seasonal adjustment, the foreign trade balance recorded a surplus of EUR 17.6 billion in May 2007.

According to provisional results of the Deutsche Bundesbank, the current account of the balance of payments showed a surplus of EUR 9.6 billion in May 2007, which included the balances of services (EUR –1.4 billion), factor income (net) (EUR –4.2 billion), current transfers (EUR –1.1 billion) and supplementary trade items (EUR –1.3 billion). In May 2006, the German current account showed a surplus of EUR 4.9 billion.

In May 2007, Germany dispatched commodities to the value of EUR 51.9 billion to the Member States of the European Union, while it received commodities to the value of EUR 41.2 billion from those countries. Compared with May 2006, dispatches to and arrivals from the EU countries increased by 10.2% and 8.5%, respectively. Commodities to the value of EUR 34.4 billion (+8.7%) were dispatched to the euro area countries in May 2007, while the value of commodities received from those countries was EUR 28.4 billion (+8.0%). Commodities to the value of EUR 17.5 billion (+13.2%) were dispatched to EU countries not belonging to the euro area in May 2007, while the value of the commodities which arrived from those countries was EUR 12.7 billion (+9.5%).

Germany exported commodities to the value of EUR 27.2 billion to and imported commodities to the value of EUR 20.4 billion from countries outside the European Union (third countries) in May 2007. Compared with May 2006, exports to third countries rose by 7.6% while imports from those countries decreased by 5.5%.

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