Seasonally adjusted exports increased by 4.1 percent on the month after falling in August and September, the Federal Statistics Office said.
Imports also saw an unexpected leap, growing 5 percent after a slightly revised rise of 0.4 percent in the prior month.
Bankhaus Lampe chief economist Alexander Krueger said catch-up effects in the auto sector likely boosted export figures and warned that large leaps would be unlikely due to uncertainty caused by the pandemic and delivery logistics.
“If materials once again flow in sufficient quantities, companies will be able to work off their order backlogs,” said VP Bank chief economist Thomas Gitzel.
“First, however, we have to get through the drought that lies ahead due to the lack of materials.”
The DIHK Chambers of Industry and Commerce expect exports to grow by 7.5 percent this year and by 7 percent next year.
The trade surplus decreased to 12.5 billion euros ($14.16 billion) from a revised 12.9 billion euros in September.
A Reuters poll had pointed to a 0.9 percent increase in exports and a 0.4 percent rise in imports, with a trade balance of 13.4 billion euros.
($1 = 0.8830 euros)