German economy rebounds to exceed expectations | News | DW

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Germany’s gross domestic product (GDP) rose a record 8.2 percent from July to September compared to the second quarter, according to figures released by the Federal Statistical Office on Friday.

The figure was “well above expectations” of around 6.6% growth, said Economy Minister Peter Altmaier.

The promising figure comes after the German economy contracted an almost unprecedented 10% quarter-on-quarter from April to June.

The crisis – one of the worst on record – was caused by strict restrictions on coronaviruses that have seen businesses shut down across the country and economic activity slowing dramatically.

The larger-than-expected rebound is due to higher private consumption, increased investment in equipment and strong exports, the statistics office said.

Preliminary data didn’t include many details, but automakers and engineering associations have pointed to surprisingly strong demand from China in recent months.

The German economy is able to “unleash the forces of growth” even under the conditions of the pandemic, Altmaier commented.

Annual forecasts revised upwards

The government also revised an annual GDP contraction from 5.8% expected in September to 5.5%.

The improvement comes before Germany reintroduces measures from Monday to curb rising COVID-19 infection rates which reached 18,000 new cases on Friday.

With the closure of restaurants and bars, growth of just 0.4% is forecast for the last quarter.

According to Altmaier, the new annual forecast takes into account the impact of the next round of restrictions.

The government plans to compensate businesses affected by the lockdown by paying them up to 75% of their sales compared to November last year. Finance Minister Olaf Scholz has allocated 10 billion euros ($ 11.6 billion) to this new aid plan.

Altmaier said officials expect the economy to recover from the impact of the pandemic by 2022.

kmm / sms (Reuters, AP, AFP, dpa)


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