German exports shoot up 4.1% in October

German exports grew at their strongest pace in more than a year in October despite persistent supply bottlenecks in manufacturing, data showed on Thursday.

Seasonally adjusted exports increased by 4.1% on the month after falling in August and September, the Federal Statistics Office said.

Imports also saw an unexpected leap, growing 5% after a slightly revised rise of 0.4% in the prior month.

Bankhaus Lampe chief economist Alexander Krueger said catch-up effects in the auto sector likely boosted export figures and warned that large leaps would be unlikely due to uncertainty caused by the pandemic and delivery logistics.

“If materials once again flow in sufficient quantities, companies will be able to work off their order backlogs,” said VP Bank chief economist Thomas Gitzel.

“First, however, we have to get through the drought that lies ahead due to the lack of materials.”

The DIHK Chambers of Industry and Commerce expect exports to grow by 7.5% this year and by 7% next year.

The trade surplus decreased to 12.5 billion euros ($14.16 billion) from a revised 12.9 billion euros in September.

A Reuters poll had pointed to a 0.9% increase in exports and a 0.4% rise in imports, with a trade balance of 13.4 billion euros.

($1 = 0.8830 euros)