Workers at a plant stand for new orders in the manufacturing sector

© Monty Rakusen/cultura/Corbis

According to the Federal Statistical Office [1], new manufacturing orders fell considerably by - 3.9 % between December 2017 and January 2018.[2] December 2017, however, was also marked by a strong increase in orders (+ 3.0 %). In January, the development of new orders for intermediate goods and capital goods was clearly negative (- 3.3 % and - 5.0 %). By contrast, the volume of orders for consumer goods, rose by 2.4 %. This significant decrease is also due to the volatile development of large orders. If they are excluded, the level of new orders decreased by - 2.4 % in January.

Despite the decline in January, the trend in new orders continues to point clearly upwards. The more meaningful two-month comparison for December/January compared with October/November shows an increase of + 0.9 %. Growth is mainly driven by foreign orders (+ 1.8), while domestic orders show a slightly negative trend (- 0.4 %).

Compared to levels of the previous year, order intake in the manufacturing sector continues to develop positively. In January, new orders were 8.2 % above the previous year’s level. International market sentiment indicators also suggest a continuation of the global recovery. German industry is therefore likely to continue its positive development.


[1] Press release from the Federal Statistical Office of 8 March 2018.
[2] All figures are based on provisional data and have been adjusted for price, calendar-day and seasonal factors (Census X-12-ARIMA).