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German industrial orders decline unexpectedly

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BERLIN (AP) — Industrial orders in Germany, Europe's biggest economy, have shown an unexpected decline despite a rebound in demand from other countries in the eurozone.

The Economy Ministry said Thursday that orders were down 0.5 percent in December compared with the previous month. That performance was well short of economists' predictions of a 0.2 percent increase. However, it followed a 2.4 percent rise in November — revised upward from the initial reading of 2.1 percent.

Orders from other nations in the eurozone jumped by 7.5 percent in December. But demand from Germany itself was down 1.6 percent and orders from other foreign nations declined by 3.7 percent.

The German economy grew by a modest 0.4 percent in 2013 but growth is expected to accelerate this year.

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