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Development of production in the manufacturing industry - reporting month March 2024

According to the Federal Statistical Office , production in the manufacturing sector fell slightly by 0.4% in March compared to the previous month, adjusted for price, calendar and seasonal effects, after increases of 1.3% and 1.7% were recorded in January and February respectively. Manufacturing in the industrial sector also recently fell by 0.4% (January: +1.3%, February: +2.0%). However, output in the construction industry increased again by 1.0%, following significant increases of 2.9% and 4.2% in January and February respectively. Energy production, on the other hand, fell noticeably by 4.2% (January: -2.7%, February: -6.9%).

Within industry, different trends were observed in the individual sectors in March: While production increased slightly in the motor vehicles/vehicle parts (+0.6% ), electrical equipment (+0.6% ) and metal products (+0.3% ) sectors, it fell in mechanical engineering (-1.0% ) and pharmaceutical products (-0.3% ). Production in the particularly energy-intensive industrial sectors remained unchanged overall, following significant increases of 4.3% and 4.6% in January and February respectively.

In a more meaningful quarter-on-quarter comparison, industry and manufacturing as a whole recorded noticeable increases of 0.7% and 1.0% respectively, despite the recent setbacks. In the construction industry, there was even an increase of 3.9% in the first quarter compared to the previous quarter, with the mild weather probably playing a role. Despite the still weak order situation, the continued brightening of the ifo business climate and the purchasing managers' index point to a further recovery in industrial production over the course of the year.