German Manufacturing Orders Up; Steel Output Mixed

FRANKFURT: German manufacturing orders rose a stronger-than-expected 5.1% in August compared with July on a seasonally adjusted basis, mainly due to a 8.1% surge in foreign orders, provisional data released Oct. 6 by the Finance Ministry shows. However, the ministry cautioned that special factors such as an "unusual accumulation of foreign big-ticket orders" and the school holiday schedule in July and August had distorted the August data. In nonadjusted terms, August manufacturing orders were up 12.2% from a year earlier, the ministry said. Economists had forecasted August manufacturing orders would rise 0.4% from July and 3.8% on the year. German raw steel output in September rose 1.4% on the year to 3.55 million tons, according to preliminary data released Oct. 6 by the Federal Statistics Office. Total raw steel output in the first nine months was down 9.3% to 31.21 million tons. In Western Germany, raw steel production in September fell 1.3% on the year to 3.01 million tons, while production in the first nine months of the year declined 10.9% to 26.83 million tons. Eastern German September raw steel production rose an annual 19.1% to 540,000 tons, with production for the first nine months rising 1.8% to 4.38 million tons.

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