German imports hit a record high in November, slashing the national trade surplus as prices of oil and other commodities climbed amid the global recovery, official data showed on Friday.
Imports gained an annualised 33.3 per cent to $97.5 billion, while exports rose by 21.7 per cent to $114.26 billion, the national statistics office Destatis said.
The Destatis office added that the level for imports was the highest since post-war German records were first compiled in 1950, while exports reached their highest level since October 2008, just after the collapse of the US investment bank Lehman Brothers.
Germany's trade surplus thus fell to $16.7 billion from $ 20.77 billion in November 2009, well below analysts’ average forecast of $19.47 billion compiled by Dow Jones Newswires.
This week, oil prices reached two-year highs of more than $90 a barrel, amid confidence in increased global demand after the US economy showed more signs of recovery.
On Wednesday, the International Energy Agency (IEA) warned that rising oil prices were entering "a dangerous zone" that could imperil a fragile economic recovery in developed nations this year.
In the 11 months from January 2010 to November however, Germany posted a surplus of $183.27 billion, with its export-oriented industrial sector reaping handsome gains from the pick-up in global trade.