German industrial orders, a key measure of demand for goods both at home and abroad, were weighed down down in May by declining domestic orders, official data showed on Friday.
Industrial orders were down 1.7 percent in May compared with the previous month, the statistics office Destatis said in a statement.
In April, German factory orders had jumped by 3.4 percent.
The figures indicated that domestic orders declined by 2.5 percent and export orders were down by 1.2 percent compared with the previous month.
Orders from the eurozone rose by 5.7 percent however, while orders from outside the eurozone tumbled 5.2 percent.
By sector, orders for semi-finished goods fell by 3.4 percent, orders for capital goods were down by 0.7 percent and orders for consumer goods fell by 1.2 percent.
Natixis economist Johannes Gareis said that despite this setback, "we expect the upward trend in the German economy to continue in the course of this year."
The recovery in the global economy and especially in the eurozone was likely to firm gradually, the expert said.
In addition, Germany's domestic economy was doing well, due to solid fundamentals such as a strong labour market which was good news for private consumption.
"Nevertheless, as indicated by the recent setback in firms' optimism as regards the German economic outlook, some clouds may be ahead. The biggest risk should stem from geopolitical tensions, which could hamper firms' investment plans as uncertainty rises," he said.
BayernLB economist Stefan Kipar said that "following the very good data for the previous months, a setback had been expected."
Nevertheless, the only very slight fall in capital goods and that second quarter data so far are above the very strong first quarter "suggest that the positive economic momentum in Germany is continuing," Kipar said.
UniCredit economist Andreas Rees similarly believed that "the upward trend in German new orders remains intact."