German economy records slight growth in Q1

  • World
  • Saturday, 25 May 2024

BERLIN, May 24 (Xinhua) -- Germany saw its economy in the first quarter (Q1) grow slightly by 0.2 percent compared to the previous quarter, according to the Federal Statistical Office (Destatis) on Friday.

"After gross domestic product (GDP) declined at the end of 2023, the German economy started 2024 with positive growth," said Ruth Brand, president of Destatis, in a statement.

After a weak second half of 2023, investments in construction rose significantly by 2.7 percent in Q1, and a positive foreign trade also contributed to the economic growth, said the Destatis. However, despite an easing inflation, the country's private household spending showed no signs of recovery, 0.4 percent lower than the previous quarter.

The slight GDP growth was due to "recovering exports and construction, but leading indicators do not point to strong dynamics for both activities in the coming quarters," Axel Lindner, deputy head of the Department of Macroeconomics at the Halle Institute for Economic Research, told Xinhua on Friday.

"Private consumption, meanwhile, has decreased, and the saving rate of private households went up, indicating that economic confidence of German consumers is still low," Lindner added.

Europe's largest economy is "not getting off the ground," the German Chamber of Commerce and Industry (DIHK) said Thursday based on a survey among more than 24,000 companies from all sectors and regions.

The results showed negative business expectations in the past few months, said DIHK managing director Martin Wansleben, adding that "the situation in the industry has deteriorated compared to the start of this year and thus remains negative."

Germany's development bank KfW continues to expect the country's growth of 0.3 percent in 2024, followed by 1.2 percent in 2025. Early indicators show that the upturn is likely to become more widespread in the second half of the year, it said.

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