German factory orders drop in November

Markets Associated Press

Cargo ships on river Rhine photographed in the winter sun in Duesseldorf, Germany, Wednesday, Jan. 4, 2017. (AP Photo/Martin Meissner) (The Associated Press)

German factory orders dropped sharply in November, offsetting some of the gains from the previous month.

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The Federal Statistical Office said Friday that industrial orders fell 2.5 percent in November over October, with drops both in foreign and domestic orders in seasonally adjusted terms.

The decrease in the figure, which tends to be volatile, followed a stronger-than-expected 5 percent gain in orders in October.

Germany's economy, Europe's biggest, has a large industrial base and is a big exporter both to the rest of Europe and beyond.