German trade surplus narrows as drop in exports outpaces drop in imports

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BERLIN – Germany’s trade surplus narrowed in March as a drop in exports from Europe’s largest economy outpaced a drop in imports.

The Federal Statistical Office reported Friday that Germany exported goods worth 91.6 billion euros ($127.81 billion) in March 2014, down 1.8 per cent from February, according to provisional figures adjusted for seasonal and calendar fluctuations. It was the largest monthly drop since May 2013. Imports dropped 0.9 per cent to 76.7 billion euros.

That put the surplus at 14.8 billion euros, down from 15.7 billion in February.

Germany has drawn criticism for relying too much on exports and not importing enough to boost other European economies. However, it barely has a trade surplus with the rest of the 18-nation eurozone, while it has a large surplus with countries outside the European Union.

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