German exports rise slightly in April

FILE PHOTO: Containers are seen at a terminal in the port of Hamburg, Germany November 14, 2019. REUTERS/Fabian Bimmer

BERLIN (Reuters) -German exports rose in April, prompted by increasing trade with the United States, suggesting a continued recovery in Europe’s biggest economy.

Seasonally adjusted exports increased by 0.3% on the month after an upwardly revised rise of 1.3% in March, the Federal Statistics Office said on Wednesday.

“After eleven increases in a row, the export sector can take it easy. Especially since its outlook remains positive,” Alexander Krueger at Bankhaus Lampe said.

Exports to the United States jumped by 59.9% compared to April last year soon after Germany entered its first lockdown to curb the coronavirus.

On the year, exports to China rose by 16% while sales to the United Kingdom rose 64%, the first increase since the beginning of the year and the UK’s completion of its departure from the European Union.

Imports dropped 1.7% after an increase of 7.1% in the prior month, as more German companies reported bottlenecks and rising costs for raw materials.

“The scarcity of materials and the lack of preliminary products are weighing on industrial production,” Thomas Gitzel at VP Bank said.

A Reuters poll had pointed to a 0.5% rise in exports and a 1.1% drop in imports. The trade surplus grew to 15.9 billion euros from 14 billion euros in March.

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