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German factory orders drop in October as economy struggles

BERLIN (AP) — German factory orders dropped in October, driven by a sharp decline in domestic activity, and suggesting industrial production in the coming months will remain slow as the economy continues to struggle.

The Federal Statistical Office reported Thursday that October orders dropped 0.4% over the previous month when adjusted for seasonal, price and calendar factors. Compared with October 2018, orders were down 5.5%.

Foreign orders rose 1.5% in October over September, but a 3.2% drop in domestic orders wiped out those gains. ING economist Carsten Brzeski says the data indicate 2019 will be the second year in a row in which new orders will have fallen.

He says trade conflicts, global uncertainty and automobile industry challenges are “clearly weighing on German industry.”

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