Germany saw an unexpectedly abrupt drop-off in its international trade performance during June 2017.
This is according to the latest data from the Federal Statistics Office, which showed that the country's exports fell by 2.8 per cent during the month, while imports declined by 4.5 per cent.
These represent the biggest drops on these metrics since August 2015 and January 2009, respectively, with the fall in exports ending a run of five straight months of growth. Economists polled by Reuters had expected a 0.3 per cent drop in exports and a 0.2 per cent gain in imports.
Despite the underwhelming nature of the trade data, economists remain confident that the German economy remains in a stable condition, with the government predicting a 1.5 per cent growth rate.
ING Bank economist Carsten Brzeski said: "Some kind of investment boost after the elections, combined with the gradual recovery of private investment already this year, should extend an already mature business cycle of the German economy well into 2018."