Germany's economy shrank by 5% in 2009, suffering its biggest contraction since the Second World War as exports fell sharply, according to official data.
It was the first time the economy contracted in six years and is in sharp contrast to recent years when the German economy grew by 1.3% in 2008 and 2.5% in 2007.
Exports, traditionally a driving force of the German economy, dropped by a price adjusted 14.7%.
Despite emerging from recession in the second quarter of 2009, consumption was the only positive contribution to GDP in 2009. Household consumption was up a price-adjusted 0.4% and government consumption expenditure rose 2.7% on the previous year.
Forecasts for 2010 are somewhat brighter with the German Government predicting growth of 1.2%, but reports suggest it could raise its forecast to 1.5%.
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