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Outlook 2018: Robust growth – fragile politics

December 15, 2017
With a growth rate of probably 2.3% in 2017, Germany delivered the main positive surprise in the industrial world. In 2018, German GDP looks set to expand by 2.3% again. If this forecast materialises, Germany will grow at an above-potential rate for the fifth year in a row. The upcoming wage round and resilient demand combined with the global decline in free capacities might, however, push up prices more strongly than currently expected. We already voiced concerns ahead of the Bundestag elections that the new government (just like its predecessor) might not pay sufficient attention to urgent challenges such as digitalisation, demographics and globalisation as the labour market situation is favourable. Now that forming a government has turned out to be unexpectedly difficult our concerns have increased. [more]

More documents about "Germany"

238 (181-192)
August 27, 2014
Besides transport and energy infrastructure, communications infrastructure is steadily gaining in importance in the regional competition to attract investment. One source of concern in particular though is the significant gulf in investment both between west German and east German federal states as well as between urban and rural regions. This is compounded by the problem that there is usually no viable business model for projects in rural areas without government subsidies. As there is no such thing as a standard blueprint for the broadband rollout with its huge investment requirements, every single project with its specific local features needs to undergo a critical economic feasibility analysis. On this basis, efforts should be taken to work out the best rollout model in terms of technology, funding and time horizon, respectively. In essence, the broadband rollout in Germany requires more government stimuli to foster private investment, but these efforts need to be coordinated and based on sound judgement. [more]
August 4, 2014
Economic growth probably suffered a worse setback in Q2 than initially presumed. We only expect stagnation now, but would no longer rule out a minimal decline. All in all, global economic conditions do not point to dynamic growth in H2. In particular, the tougher sanctions on Russia and the risk of further escalation of the conflict are set to weigh on business sentiment and investment activity in spite of Russia's low share in German exports. The debate triggered by ECB and Bundesbank comments about higher wage increases in Germany is likely to have a similar impact, even though the substance of the statements is less spectacular, on closer inspection, than the media hype. As uncertainties abound we have decided to refrain for now from making a downward revision to our full-year forecast of 1.8% GDP growth. [more]
July 28, 2014
Germany has become the No. 1 destination country for migrants in Europe again and No. 2 in the whole OECD after the United States. The turnaround reflects the crisis in the EMU periphery as well as the (postponed) opening of the German labour market to citizens from the 10 Central and Eastern European countries that joined the EU in 2004 and 2007. The higher immigration should only temporarily obscure the negative effects from the introduction of a minimum wage and the retirement wave triggered by the "pension at 63" option. Given the economic recovery in the eurozone periphery the present migration surge is unlikely to last and ageing Germany’s demand for labour from outside the EU will increase. Therefore, Germany needs to shape up to encourage more pull-based immigration. This requires a skills-oriented migration policy as well as more flexibility in the labour market and at the company level. [more]
June 30, 2014
After a good start into 2014, manufacturing output in Germany looks set to grow by 4% in real terms in the full year. Even though business expectations have recently weakened somewhat, they remain in positive territory. Despite the good labour market situation in Germany inflation has decelerated noticeably. The outlook of a recovering global economy, a sliding euro and the introduction of a nation-wide minimum wage in Germany lead us to forecast that inflation is bottoming out. After hitting 1.1% in the current year it could pick up to 1.6% in 2015. [more]
June 26, 2014
Due to numerous political incentives, especially relating to the Renewable Energy Sources Act (EEG), the renewables share has increased sixfold since 1997 with regard to both primary energy consumption and electricity generation. Germany's first energy policy rethink (or Energiewende 1.0) not only sent costs ballooning but also impacted on electricity prices, the generation mix and emissions trading. And despite the EEG the contribution of wind/solar to primary energy consumption (PEC) was a mere 2%-plus in 2013. Overall, the “green electricity share” could reach roughly 60% by 2035. But how will the remaining 40% be generated – in view of the Energiewende 2.0? Depending on the scenario, the onus is more on natural gas or coal. [more]
June 4, 2014
With the dream start into 2014 we have lifted our GDP forecast to 1.8% (from 1.5%). For 2015 we maintain our 2% call, as we expect that the only temporary increase in the sum of gross wages resulting from the introduction of the minimum wage will be offset by more cautious investment spending. [more]
May 26, 2014
The differences between the German automotive industry and the automotive industry in Germany will continue to expand in the coming years – the construction of production capacities in the growth markets is progressing. Expansion abroad does not have to be to the detriment of Germany as an automaking location. However, a stable or even positive development of Germany as an automotive manufacturing location cannot be taken for granted. We outline three potential scenarios for the development of Germany as an automaking location until 2025. In our most likely scenario domestic car output remains at around its current level until then. At the same time Germany benefits from a gradual recovery in western European car demand. In addition, smaller export markets become more important. [more]
May 23, 2014
From the standpoint of potential company founders, an inadequate supply of funding is a key issue especially in a start-up's early phases. Therefore, we welcome the efforts of the crowdfunding movement from an economic perspective, particularly with regard to growth. However, there is an urgent need for action aimed at eliminating the existing information asymmetries and conflicts of interest between company founders, funding platforms and investors. [more]
May 5, 2014
Big data is increasingly becoming a factor in production, market competitiveness and, therefore, growth. Cutting-edge analysis technologies are making inroads into all areas of people’s lives and changing their day-to-day existence. Sensors, biometric identification and the general trends towards a convergence of information and communications technologies are driving the big data movement. Data has a commercial value – therefore the risks should not be underestimated. It is now a question of putting in place the necessary regulatory framework to allow these state-of-the-art methods and the technology that underpins them to properly flourish. [more]
May 2, 2014
Given the continued strong employment build-up and wage increases as well as slight increase in hours worked disposable income should grow by 2.5% even though monetary social benefits and income from self-employment and from investment are expected to rise only at a sub-par rate. Due to the falling inflation rate this allows real private consumption to rise by 1.2% in 2014, and might even have some upside potential. From 2015 the federal government plans to deliver a balanced budget. This year the federal budget will already run a structural surplus. Budgetary risks arise from higher interest rates and a weakening economy, as the budget includes barely any reserves for them while being exposed to potential additional spending on adjustments that need to be made to the minimum subsistence level (basic personal allowance) and children's allowance or for increases that need to be made to infrastructure spending. [more]
April 23, 2014
Industry 4.0 will upgrade Germany as an industrial location by bringing on the fourth industrial revolution. With trade flows becoming increasingly internationally interlinked, the aspects associated with Industry 4.0 of automation, more flexible processes as well as horizontal and vertical integration will become more and more important features of a modern, competitive production structure. Especially for Germany with its particularly favourable basic conditions, Industry 4.0 provides the long-term major opportunity to consolidate the country's leading position in the competitive global marketplace – also relative to the fast-growing emerging markets. [more]
March 11, 2014
The massive expansion of renewables in the last few years has led to an increase in the volatility of the power supply. As the implementation of the "Energiewende" is one of the crucial issues for the new federal government, this also requires innovative solutions that go beyond traditional technical storage facilities in our view. Looking ahead, the energy revolution may hardly succeed without power-to-gas as power-to-gas as a storage medium could offset the continuing strong increases in the volatilities in power supply. The prospects for power-to-gas are favourable. Experts claim the installation of power-to-gas systems with an electricity generation of 1,000 MW by 2022 to establish an initial market. If in the time thereafter – as we expect – the demand for electricity storage media continues to rise as a result of increasing green electricity quantities and fluctuations, power-to-gas is an appropriate answer to the currently still open question as to a sustainable technical solution. [more]