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May 12, 2020
After shrugging off a historic plunge in April employment, market participants will likely need to digest further record-setting monthly declines in core CPI inflation as well as April retail sales and industrial production. However, with financial markets seemingly numb to the bad data news, Fed Chair Powell's appearance on Wednesday may overshadow what is likely to be epic weakness in this week's economic data. Matthew Luzzetti, Chief US Economist shares his insights. [more]
May 8, 2020
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Weaker-than-expected March hard data and shocking April survey data point to a lower trough in economic activity than assumed so far. We now see Q2 GDP falling by 14% qoq, with the risks still skewed to the downside. In the 2009 recession, private consumption acted as a massive shock absorber. Given the lockdown, social distancing and a likely severe hit to income expectations, we expect private consumption to fall by 10% in 2020. The asynchronous global development of the COVID-19 pandemic and lasting impediments to global trade, will make the recovery, which began in May and will become more evident in H2, less dynamic than hoped for earlier. As a result, we expect German GDP to decline by 9% this year and to expand by about 4% in 2021. [more]
May 5, 2020
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The corona crisis is currently overshadowing all other aspects of the German property market. On the assumption of a strong recovery in the second half of the year structural issues will return to the foreground and the pandemic will slow down, but not bring an end to the German property cycle. In this report we look into both the negative effects of the crisis and fundamental factors and assess the outcome for the German house and office market. A flight to safety and the potential increased immigration could have a positive impact in the medium term. [more]
May 5, 2020
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Due to the coronavirus, production in the manufacturing sector in Germany is expected to fall by roughly 10% to 15% in real terms in 2020. Society and business will learn to live with the coronavirus and weigh up health, social and economic risks in the process. In 2021, industrial production could rise by more than 10% in real terms on average over the course of the year. However, overall we see a risk that Germany may become less attractive as an industrial location over the coming years. Policymakers and industrial companies are likely to view the crisis surrounding the coronavirus as an opportunity to make important political decisions and get structural reforms off the ground, as they should. [more]
May 4, 2020
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During March, the first month in which the coronavirus pandemic made itself felt in Europe, banks' balance sheets grew substantially. On the one hand, euro-area banks raised enormous amounts of liquidity from the ECB, other financial corporations and non-financial companies. On the other, they just kept a large part of that at the central bank or lent it to other banks and other financial corporations. In addition, banks extended markedly more credit to non-financial firms which likewise stacked up their liquidity buffers to prepare for weaker cash flows as a result of the looming massive recession. The crisis so far had no major impact on banks’ retail business and their holdings of government bonds. [more]
April 29, 2020
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Analyst:
The government’s coffers are not bottomless. That is why any money spent on cushioning the impact of the corona crisis should be used as efficiently as possible to achieve the maximum positive impact or compensate for the damage caused by the lockdown. Unlike other sectors, such as hotels or restaurants, car producers in Germany were and are not directly affected by the lockdown. Car dealers have re-opened. Moreover, a car-scrapping bonus scheme will cause customers to bring forward purchases, with sales declining in the following year. In addition, high-wage earners in particular will benefit from the financial windfall. Car sales in Germany play only a limited role for German carmakers’ overall profitability. And finally, subsidies for e-cars already provide an incentive to include environmental considerations in car-buying decisions. [more]
April 24, 2020
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The press statement of European Council President Michel after yesterday’s video conference of EU leaders remained vague on the EU’s joint fiscal response to the COVID-19 crisis. EU leaders endorsed their earlier agreement on the EUR 540 bn package of safety nets and also agreed “to work towards establishing a recovery fund”, asking the Commission to rapidly prepare a proposal of what this requires. Interlinking the EU's recovery plan with the budget might add another layer of complexity but could also serve as a spur for rapid agreements on both matters. [more]
April 22, 2020
The economic slump is taking its toll on the banking industry. For the major US banks, profits in Q1 more than halved compared to the prior year, as loan loss reserves jumped. Revenues declined moderately with weakness in interest income and fees and commissions partly compensated for by a jump in trading income. Deposits, loans and other assets surged because clients hoarded liquidity. Banks’ capital ratios fell only somewhat and they remain well capitalised. Banks in Europe may have faced similar trends overall but will probably have benefited less from the supportive trading environment and suffered more from declining capital ratios. They are also handicapped by their much lower starting level in terms of profitability. [more]
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