German trade data starting to improve

GERMAN exports rose for the third consecutive month in July, widening the country&rsquo;s trade surplus to &euro;12.4bn (&pound;10.9bn) and raising hopes that a recovery is underway in Europe&rsquo;s biggest economy.<br /><br />On a seasonally-adjusted basis, exports rose 2.3 per cent in July on the previous month to &euro;68.4bn, while imports remained unchanged at &euro;55.9bn. Economists had expected a gain of 1.2 per cent in July.<br /><br />Germany is the world&rsquo;s biggest exporter and relies on sales of its manufactured goods to other countries for growth. Last month, data showed that the economy unexpectedly expanded 0.3 per cent in the second quarter.?Stats from the first forward-looking surveys also suggest the economy should strengthen.