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February 03, 2014 AT 7:06 AM
Rises in new orders, output and employment drove the strongest growth in German manufacturing in January in more than 2-1/2 years, a survey showed on Monday, in a sign Europe's largest economy began the year on a solid footing. Markit's Purchasing Managers' Index for the German manufacturing sector, which accounts for about a fifth of the economy, rose to 56.5 in January from 54.3 in December, its seventh consecutive month of expansion. Oliver Kolodseike at Markit says, "The sharp rise in new work was supported by stronger demand from both domestic and foreign markets, with Asian countries and the United States mentioned as sources of export growth."