Germany’s economy gathered momentum in the first quarter of 2017, growing 0.6 percent, in line with expectations, with increases in both foreign and domestic demand. The Federal Statistical Office said Friday that with the mild winter the construction industry fared particularly well, but investment in machinery and equipment was ”markedly up” in the January-March period compared to the previous quarter. The office says households and general government also increased their consumption expenditures slightly at the beginning of the year.
The increase, according to figures adjusted for price, seasonal and calendar variations, followed 0.4 percent growth in the last quarter of 2016. ING economist Carsten Brzeski said the German economy is profiting from a combination of fundamentals, including a strong labor market, higher wages, low interest rates and a weak euro.