By Bridge News Several world economic reports were released recently, including: UK manufacturing surpasses expectations: UK manufacturing output and industrial production both came in well above market expectations in August, data issued by the National Statistics office Oct. 6 showed. Industrial output was up 0.6% on the month and 1.6% on the year, while manufacturing output was up 0.8% on the month and 1.1% on the year. The statistics office noted, however, that the rise in manufacturing output was almost entirely due to a sharp increase in production of electrical and optical equipment, and that without this output would have only been up 0.1% on the month. Germany manufacturing up: Strong foreign demand for industrial goods boosted the volume of German manufacturing orders in August, the Finance Ministry said Oct. 6. Surpassing expectations, manufacturing orders were up 1.7% in August compared with July, with foreign orders rising by 2.8%, while domestic demand also advanced by 1.1%. Orders were much higher in western Germany (up 2.9% on the month), while eastern Germany suffered a severe set back (down 10.7% on the month). Japan reduces GDP outlook: A Bank of Japan (BOJ) official said Oct. 6 the potential gross domestic product (GDP) growth of the country is around 1.0%, lower than 2%, which was previously believed possible, according to the central bank's estimates. French economy grows 0.7%: The French economy grew 0.7% in the second quarter compared with the previous quarter, the same rate as in the first three months, according to final data issued by national statistics institute INSEE. Although the rate of consumer spending slowed from the first quarter, and stock variations in industry had a negative impact on GDP growth, total fixed investment grew strongly.