BERLIN, Sept. 9 (Xinhua) -- German exports fell sharply in July, official data showed on Friday, concluding the past week which saw disappointing figures of economic performance.
Compared with June, German exports dropped by 2.6 percent in July, said German federal statistics office Destatis. Imports also declined by 0.7 percent.
Germany's trade surplus, the balance between exports and imports, narrowed to 19.4 billion euros (21.8 billion U.S. dollars) in July from 21.4 billion euros in the previous month.
"The foreign trade starts the second half year with a crash landing," said Anton F. Boerner, head of German foreign traders'association BGA.
"The unusually high number of crises left their mark. This leads to an enormous amount of uncertainty, which is accompanied by a lack of investment,"he added.
The data on Friday added another sign that Europe's biggest economy started the third quarter on a weak footing.
Germany's industrial output slumped in July, factory orders growth in the month also missed economists' expectation, suggesting subdued industrial activity in the autumn.
"Today's data confirm the picture already painted by earlier industrial data: the former powerful engine of the German economy, industry, is stuttering," said Carsten Brzeski, ING DiBa bank's chief economist.