Germany industrial production fell in October as high energy prices weighed on manufacturing output, adding to evidence of a slowdown in Europe’s industrial powerhouse at the beginning of the fourth quarter. Industrial output–comprising production in manufacturing, energy and construction–fell by a marginal 0.1% in October after increasing by an upwardly revised 1.1% in September, according to data from the German statistics office Destatis published Wednesday.
The reading beats the 0.7% decline expected by economists in a poll by The Wall Street Journal. Manufacturing output decreased 0.4% compared with the previous month, while energy production fell 7.6% and construction output climbed 4.2%, Destatis data showed. Production at energy-intensive industrial branches fell by 3.6% in October, in a sign these sectors are scaling back production in view of high energy costs. Germany’s manufacturing sector is struggling with sluggish orders in recent months due to weakening demand amid a global economic slowdown. Even as the threat of gas shortages in the industry has eased, high energy costs, elevated inflation and an uncertain economic outlook post headwinds to the sector, economists say. Write to Xavier Fontdegloria at [email protected]