According to the Federal Statistical Office, output in the goods-producing sector rose by 2.5% in price-, calendar- and seasonally adjusted terms in August as compared to the previous month. This was due to the substantial 3.3% expansion in industrial output, whilst construction output dropped slightly by -1.2%.
However, the figures were probably affected by the unusual timing of school and works holidays. If, instead, one takes the change in the production index for the July/August period compared with the second quarter, output rose slightly ( 0.2%). Here, the developments in industry and construction are in opposite directions, with industrial output still declining slightly at -0.3% and the construction sector recording a moderate increase of 0.7%.
Overall, the figures suggest that the third quarter will see a restrained increase in output in the goods-producing sector. At the same time, the indicators are pointing towards a slight acceleration during the rest of the year. Latest figures show improvements both in the level of new orders in the manufacturing sector and in the indicators of sentiment like the ifo business climate and the purchasing managers expectations.