Germany has reported a larger than expected increase in exports for September, raising hopes that the country may avoid a double-dip recession.
The Federal Statistics Office revealed exports rose by 2.3 per cent in the month, above the increase of two per cent that had been predicted by economists.
Imports, on the other hand, fell by 0.1 per cent, down from an increase of 5.8 per cent in August. As a result, Germany's trade surplus grew to €17.8 billion.
ING economist Carsten Brzeski told Reuters: "Looking ahead, exports and industrial production could still prevent the economy from falling into a second lockdown depression in the final quarter of the year."
He also suggested that Joe Biden's victory in the US presidential election may provide a further boost to Germany's exports in the coming months, as the threat of tariffs imposed by president Trump should disappear.
This is set to be especially good news for the German automotive industry, which was expected to be one of the key sectors targeted by the Trump administration's trade policies.
Like many other European nations, however, Germany has increased restrictions on its economy in recent weeks in response to a surge in Covid-19 cases, which could make the outlook for Q4 and beyond more uncertain.
Bars, restaurants, gyms, cinemas, theaters and domestic tourism have been closed for a month to try and stem the spread of the pandemic, which may impact consumer spending and demand for many goods.