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China Slowdown, “Global Turbulence” Trigger Collapse of Export Orders for German Equipment Makers

from Wolf Street:

It hasn’t hit overall German exports yet. Year-to-date through August, total exports are up 6.6% from last year and are expected to set another record by year-end. Exuberance in Germany’s well-oiled export machinery still reigns.

But beneath the surface, German plant and machinery makers are getting slammed by the recessions in Russia and Brazil, the slowdown in China that officially still doesn’t exist, and the “turbulence” in the global markets, according to a report today by the German Engineering Federation VDMA.


image/theguardian.co.uk

The association represents over 3,100 mostly medium-sized companies in the capital goods industry. Mechanical engineering is Germany’s forte. Many of the companies are world leaders. They cover the “entire process chain” in the mechanical engineering sector, according to the VDMA, including:

Associated tools and components, of process, production, manufacturing, drive-train and automation engineering, office and information technology, software, and product-related services, i.e. from components to plants, from system suppliers and system integrators through to service providers.

They employ over 1 million workers that develop and produce “key technologies for the global market,” with 76% of their revenues derived from exports. Alas, about 42% of these exports are headed to developing economies, including Russia, Brazil, and particularly China.

These economies are now in trouble. And for German plant and equipment makers, things have come unglued. In September, total orders plunged 13% year-over-year. While domestic business edged up 1%, export orders plummeted 18%.

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