Germany's economy grew 0.8 per cent in the first quarter of this year, dpa cited government statisticians as saying Thursday. The seasonally and price-adjusted rise in gross domestic product (GDP), as compared to the fourth quarter of last year, was greater than the 0.7 per cent average forecast issued earlier by bank analysts. Growth in the fourth quarter of last year had been 0.4 per cent. Federal statisticians said domestic demand had been a key driver in the surge, aided by a mild winter that allowed construction activityn to stay on track. Year on year, Germany's GDP was up 2.5 per cent.