Germany October chemicals sales fall 0.5% amid dimmer outlook

09 December 2010 17:46  [Source: ICIS news]

TORONTO (ICIS)--Germany’s chemical sales fell 0.5% from September to October, the country’s federal statistics office said on Thursday amid forecasts that the country's chemical industry is slowing down after strong growth earlier this year.

Wiesbaden-based agency Statistisches Bundesamt said that Germany's chemical sales in October declined both in domestic and export markets, by 0.9% and 0.2%, respectively.

Export sales to customers in the eurozone were still up 0.6% from September. The agency only disclosed percentage changes, but did not disclose sales in absolute euro currency terms.

October’s decline in chemical sales came after a 0.2% sequential decline in September and growth of 2.1% in August.

Overall, manufacturing sales in Europe’s largest economy rose 4.1% from September to October, after a revised 1.4% sequential decline from August to September.

October’s increase marked the highest sequential increase in manufacturing sales since December 1997, the agency said.

Domestic manufacturing sales rose 4.0% from September to October, and export sales rose 4.2%.

Germany’s chemical employers warned that the outlook for the industry’s growth had become dimmer in recent months after an “unexpectedly quick recovery” in the earlier part of the year.

Chemical employers trade group BAVC said that the industry’s domestic sales had “stagnated” in recent months, while export sales growth had been “tempered”.

Germany’s chemical producers had been able to quickly benefit from the recovery in the global economy earlier this year, but “growth dynamics” were now slowing down, with only moderate increases expected in the current fourth quarter, the group said.

Expected slower global growth would dampen demand in Germany’s export-based chemicals industry, the group added.

“The latest third-quarter data showed that the economic recovery will proceed only in small steps going forward,” it added.

Risks for Germany’s chemical producers included tightening government budgets in the eurozone, which would hurt chemical exports; potentially “new shocks” in the banking and financial sector; and increasing tensions in currency markets, which could lead to a revaluation of the euro at the expense of the country’s exporters, the group said.

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By: Stefan Baumgarten
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