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Posts Tagged Economic trends
May 13th, 2013 | Thema: News
Due to falling demand and declining new orders industrial companies in Germany curbed their production in April for the first time since the start of the year. This is one of the results of the seasonally adjusted Markit/BME Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI). Although the decline in production was low, it covered all three industrial sectors. Production volumes fell most strongly in the consumer goods industry, followed by capital goods. The lowest fall was posted by manufacturers of intermediate goods. The total PMI for manufacturing industry fell from 49.0 in March 2013 to 48.1 points now and was thus below the growth threshold of 50 points once again.
The various PMI sub-indices all declined in April. The downwards trend was particularly noticeable in purchasing prices. They fell to the lowest level since August 2009. Many raw materials became noticeably cheaper, especially steel and products based on crude oil. For the first time in three months industrial companies have also granted lower price discounts on their finished products. In the opinion of DIHK Chief Economist Dr Alexander Schumann, the clear decline in the PMI strengthened the picture of a weak start to the year with a subdued outlook for the rest of the year.
March 18th, 2013 | Thema: News
In the fourth quarter of 2012 German exports increased by 1.3 per cent compared to the corresponding quarter in the previous year to 271.4 billion euros, as reported by the Statistische Bundesamt (Destatis, or Federal Statistics Office). While shipments to member states of the European Union (EU) fell by 0.8 per cent to 153.5 billion euros in the fourth quarter of 2012, exports to countries outside the EU (third countries) rose by 4.2 per cent to 118.0 billion euros. Shipments to EU member states that do not belong to the eurozone also grew with a plus of 1.7 per cent to 52.4 billion euros. In contrast, exports to eurozone countries fell by 2.1 per cent to 101.1 billion euros.
The most important trading partner for shipments to countries outside the EU was once again the USA. In comparison to the same period in the previous year, exports to the United States rose by 9.0 per cent to 21.5 billion euros in the fourth quarter of 2012. The development of shipments to the so-called “BRIC states” (Brazil, Russia, India and China) was – with one exception – negative: thus exports to China fell by 6.1 per cent to 15.7 billion euros in the fourth quarter of 2012. Exports to India declined by 13.8 per cent to 2.5 billion euros and shipments to Brazil of a total of 2.7 billion euros were 2.2 per cent lower than in the same quarter of the previous year. Merely exports to Russia posted growth of 6.6 per cent to 9.7 billion euros.
March 11th, 2013 | Thema: News
The KfW Bankengruppe expects stagnating corporate investment in 2013 and evaluates this as “good news” after business investment activities last year hit a low. The decline had finally stopped, said the Chief Economist of the KfW, Jörg Zeuner. Due to low capacity utilisation at companies, although the first half of the year will still be characterised by a reserved readiness to invest, investment activity will move upwards from the middle of the year. The KfW is forecasting a “big fat zero” of -0.1 per cent for the whole year.
The current KfW investment barometer states there was the fourth decline in a row of German corporate investment in the fourth quarter of 2012. Thus, despite the extraordinarily favourable interest environment, investment shrank by 2.5 cent in 2012 as a whole. A relatively moderate decline of -0,3 per cent in the fourth quarter in comparison with the previous quarter, however, as well as the latest business surveys, signal that the fall had bottomed out. The KfW is optimistic there will be increasing investment activity in 2013, because it expects a recovery in the world economy, particularly in the USA. It added that further positive factors were low interest rates and the easy access companies have to credit. In contrast, the bank group also specifies downside risks arising from the uncertain economic development in the eurozone.
February 25th, 2013 | Thema: News
The ten independent business cycle research institutes of the EUROFRAME Group (European Forecasting Research Association for the Macro-Economy), whose German member is the Deutsche Institut für Wirtschaftsforschung (DIW Berlin, or German Institute for Economic Research), are assuming in their current winter forecast 2012/2013 that total economic production in the eurozone shrank by 0.5 per cent in 2012. The reasons given by the scientists were a weak foreign business environment, the pronounced uncertainty on the financial markets and strongly dampening finance policy. Accordingly, during the year those countries in the eurozone that had previously still supported economic development in the euro area were also increasingly caught by weakness in growth. The weakening at the end of the year also had effects on a rise in average gross domestic product in 2013. Overall the institutes also expect declining gross domestic product in the eurozone in 2013.
According to the forecast, although the mood and trust of the economy will improve during this year, foreign demand could not compensate for the falling demand within the eurozone, however, so that GDP will drop by 0.3 per cent in 2013. The institutes see the inflation rate at 1.5 per cent and the unemployment rate at a level of 12.4 per cent. The EUROFRAME Group only expects a rise in total economic production in 2014. This will be moderate at 1.3 per cent.
February 18th, 2013 | Thema: News
Growth started in Germany at the beginning of 2013. The mood of crisis has calmed and the current business situation of companies has stabilised, reports the Deutsche Industrie- und Handelskammertag (DIHK, or Association of German Chambers of Commerce and Industry) on the basis of its latest growth survey. The DIHK growth survey at the beginning of 2013 evaluated more than 28,000 company answers. On this basis the DIHK expects growth of 0.7 per cent this year. This corresponds to the economic growth estimated in autumn 2012.
Furthermore, the DIHK forecasts a continued rise in employment. On annual average this will amount to an extra 150,000 jobs. This rise in employment will not lower the unemployment figure one for one, however, but will primarily soak up the “hidden reserve” and come from European employees.