China's exports and imports fell more than expected in October, with weak domestic and global demand adding to doubts that a pick-up in economic activity in the world's largest trading nation can be sustained. As David Pollard reports, there was also disappointment for Germany - industrial production fell at its fastest rate in more than two years in September.
Euro zone finance ministers talking shop in Brussels .... Amid signs the shop window has lost some of its lustre. German industry posted its biggest fall in two years in September. Exports from the euro zone's number one economy were also down. As for why: Brexit and German electoral risk perhaps weighing on the figures. Or the European single currency. SOUNDBITE (English) CHIEF ECONOMIST, WORLD FIRST, JEREMY COOK, SAYING: "The euro has got stronger on a trade-weighted basis. The majority of European trade is with the US and with the UK and we've seen a huge amount of strengthening from the single currency there, so they're not being helped as much as they were two years ago by the currency". And while Greek debt has been top of the agenda in Brussels, they may also talk of risks further afield. China's exports and imports also down more than expected, according to October numbers. Though the post-Brexit strength of the UK economy is still producing positive surprises. Factory output picked up in September. Retail sales showed their strongest growth in almost a year. Rising prices pushing consumers to spend more. SOUNDBITE (English) CHIEF ECONOMIST, WORLD FIRST, JEREMY COOK, SAYING: "We're going to be talking a lot more about inflation through 2017. 'Stagflation' is something we haven't talked about, possibly since 2011. Stagnant growth - and high inflation. We've started to see that already in the CPI numbers. The follow-through from the fall in the pound is starting to drive prices higher." Along with 'stagflation', a row over Toblerone reducing the size of its UK bars - to deal with currency differentials - has also this week ushered a new word into the economic lexicon: 'shrinkflation'.