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German economic growth confirmed at 0.4% in Q1

Germany's economy recovered in the first quarter of 2019 logging a 0.4% growth, after stalling in the last quarter of 2018.

The quarter-over-quarter increase is in line with market expectations and the preliminary estimate released by the country's Federal Statistical Office.

The quarterly growth mainly came on the back of domestic demand, but external demand also increased. Gross fixed capital formation in machinery and equipment increased by 1.2% and by up to 1.9% in construction.

Household consumption expenditure rose 1.2%, while government consumption expenditure fell by 0.3%.

Exports increased 1% over the previous quarter, while imports increased 0.7%.

The calendar adjusted annual economic growth came in at 0.7%, higher than the 0.6% rise recorded in the fourth quarter of 2018.

Separately, business sentiment in Germany weakened more than expected in May, survey data from the ifo Institute showed. The seasonally adjusted business climate index fell to 97.9 points in May from 99.2 points in April. The Econoday consensus forecast was for a 99.0 reading.

The current business situation index slipped to 100.6 from a reading of 103.4, while the expectations index was unchanged at 95.3. Business sentiment worsened for the manufacturing, services and trade sectors, while it rose for the third time in construction.

The expectations of manufacturers, however, improved for the first time since September 2018, according to the survey.