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Industrial orders in Europe's largest economy Germany fell back in August, official data showed Monday, adding to a picture of declining activity at vital manufacturing firms.

New contracts fell 0.6 percent compared with July, federal statistics authority Destatis said, disappointing analysts' predictions of a 0.6-percent increase.

In a year-on-year comparison, orders were down 6.7 percent on August 2018's level.

"The weakness in demand continues in industry. Activity will remain muted for now," the economy ministry said in a statement.

Looking in more detail at the data, orders fell only 0.3 percent month-on-month when counting out large contracts for items like aircraft - a volatile element that can distort the overall figure.

Copyright Agence France-Presse, 2019

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