The US economy has recorded a first quarter contraction of 6.1 percent (projected annually), due to falling exports and business investment. The quarter's results was worse than predicted and follows a 6.3 percent contraction recorded in the previous quarter. However, consumer spending rose 2.2 percent during the same period. Meanwhile, the German government has released forecasts that show Europe's largest economy shrinking by six percent this year, a greater contraction than the 2.25 percent forecast in January. Slight growth of 0.5 percent will begin in 2010, according to revised predictions.