Several years ago I began using the analogy of the 10th plague of the Old Testament, the idea being that the EU wouldn’t move away from austerity until it brought down Germany itself. It’s looking like that day is getting a whole lot closer, as austerity has not only damaged Germany’s export markets in the rest of the EU, but has also caused the rest of the EU to become more competitive vs Germany in the external markets, which have themselves been weakened by their own austerity policies.

German industry output plunges most in over 5 years

Oct 7 (Reuters) — German industrial output fell far more than expected in August and posted its biggest drop since the financial crisis in early 2009, Economy Ministry data showed on Tuesday, the latest figures to raise question marks about Europe’s largest economy.

The 4.0 percent month-on-month drop missed the consensus forecast in a Reuters poll for a 1.5 percent decrease and came short even of the lowest forecast for a 3.0 percent fall. It was the biggest drop since a 6.9 percent fall in January 2009.