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German exports, imports up in March to highest monthly level recorded; production lower

BERLIN – German exports rose in March to what the government’s statistics office says is the highest monthly figure ever recorded, but industrial production in Europe’s biggest economy slipped.

The Federal Statistical Office said Friday that Germany exported goods and services worth 107.5 billion euros ($122 billion), a 12.4-per cent gain over a year earlier, while imports hit 84.5 billion euros — a 7.1-per cent gain and also a record.

In month-on-month terms, exports were up 1.2 per cent and imports rose 2.4 per cent. Germany’s trade surplus narrowed to 19.3 billion euros from 19.7 billion euros.

Separately, the Economy Ministry reported that industrial production in Germany dropped 0.5 per cent in March compared with the previous month. It pointed to a lack of momentum in key sectors such as the auto and machinery industries.