The German economy, Europe's biggest, will notch up "strong" growth in the first half of 2015, driven by robust exports and buoyant consumer spending, the German central bank or Bundesbank said Monday.
"The German economy, following surprisingly strong growth at the end of 2014, should have continued to grow strongly in the first quarter of 2015," the Bundesbank wrote in its latest monthly report.
"For the second quarter, too, the robust economic uptrend will continue. The main driving forces are foreign demand, private consumption and, to a lesser extent, residential construction," the report said.
There were also signs of a pick-up in company investment, the Bundesbank said.
Consumer spending, which was already robust thanks to favourable labour market developments and strong wage increases, had received an additional boost in purchasing power from falling energy prices, it argued.
Furthermore, households had also increased their savings ratio "so that the additional real room for spending hasn't been fully utilised," the Bundesbank continued.
The German economy grew by a stronger-than-expected 0.7 percent in the fourth quarter of last year, shrugging off the temporary lull in the preceding quarters.
The 0.7-percent expansion in gross domestic product (GDP) in the final quarter of 2014 lifted growth for the whole year to 1.6 percent.
The national statistics office Destatis will publish a preliminary estimate of first-quarter gross domestic product (GDP) growth on May 13.