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Economic and european policy

In this section you find analyses and commentaries on European (and especially German) economic and fiscal policy. Particular attention is devoted to the institutional development of the EU, above all monetary union, and its individual policy areas.

311 Documents
October 25, 2022
Region:
Digital policy has become increasingly important in recent years. With its digital strategy, the German government has presented an agenda for which a digital budget is to be adopted in the Bundestag in November 2022. This is an important contribution by Germany to the EU's Digital Decade, particularly in the four areas of connectivity (5G and fiber coverage), digital skills, the use of digital technologies and AI in companies, and the provision of digital public services. Further legislative initiatives at EU level have as their goal the creation of a digital space in order to be able to compete internationally with Asia and the USA. To this end, the German government's digital strategy sets priorities in 25 fields of action. The next three years will be decisive for an effective implementation of the digital reform program for Germany. [more]
1
September 27, 2022
Region:
German economy: Out in the cold. The real income and confidence shock resulting from the NS1 shutoff as well as the negative real wealth shock of some EUR 1.5 tn will likely send private consumption into a tailspin in 2023. Surging uncertainty and the energy shock causing a slump in competitiveness and profits will put a brake on corporate investment spending, in our opinion. The three fiscal packages and a probable additional one will likely not prevent a GDP slump. Together with a weaker global outlook, we expect the loss in final domestic demand to result in a GDP drop of 3% to 4% in 2023, after an increase of around 1% in 2022. [more]
2
July 14, 2022
Region:
Moving into recession. A likely further decline in Russian gas supply after the maintenance of NS1 will necessitate additional savings. While we do not expect a full rationing, we believe the economic consequences will together with a US recession and other headwinds push Germany into a recession in H2 2022. Given that prospects for Russian gas deliveries have darkened since February, this energy shock will not hit Germany by surprise or unprepared. Hence, we expect a modest but rather drawn-out GDP decline, as the economy gradually adjusts. After a 1 ¼% expansion in 2022, German GDP will shrink by around 1% in 2023, largely because consumers will not be able to offset the real income loss by further dissaving. In a “tap remains turned off” scenario, we expect a rationing of gas leading to a GDP slump between 5% and 6% in 2023. [more]
3
May 20, 2022
Region:
In this edition of Focus Germany we look at the cyclical, short-term challenges brought about by the Ukraine war with regard to growth, inflation and public finances. We also analyse the more structural longer-term challenges, such as reducing the countries’ energy dependence on Russia and the governing coalition’s efforts to integrate new priorities precipitated by the historic watershed into its already very ambitious agenda. [more]
4
March 4, 2022
Region:
War in Ukraine – slowing but not ending the German recovery. In a moderate economic scenario (which is our new baseline forecast) we expect German GDP to grow by between 2 ½% and 3% (old forecast 4%). Surging energy prices should push the annual inflation rate to around 5 ½% in 2022. Government spending is expected to be ramped up by 1 ¼ and 1 ½ pp, limiting the overall growth loss. In a more severe scenario headline inflation could rise to between 6 ½% and 7%, as oil and gas deliveries are at least temporarily halted. Annual GDP growth should be a meagre 1% to 1 ½%. [more]
5
December 15, 2021
Region:
4% GDP growth in 2022, despite technical recession in winter half. A synchronous acceleration should result in annual GDP growth of 4%. In 2023, quarterly GDP growth will slow towards trend. In fiscal policy ambitious spending plans and debt brake commitment lead to open funding questions. Based on the previous fiscal regime, the fiscal deficit is set to narrow considerably. Still, the new government’s big spending plans, which are not yet quantifiable, could drive deficits considerably higher. Inflation decelerating from 5%+ rates, but higher core rate more permanent. Carryover effects and cost pressures will keep CPI inflation elevated. In 2023, headline and core rates are unlikely to fall below 2%. German politics 2022: “Team Scholz” will focus on climate protection and sizeable corporate tax allowances for green and digital investments. German EU policy might be less fiscal orthodox and open to a cautious reform of the EU’s fiscal rules. [more]
6
November 5, 2021
Region:
Another "COVID winter". GDP growth failed to accelerate further in Q3, as the supply shortages provided an increasing drag on industrial output. The supply chain issues will prevail throughout the winter half and only taper off very gradually during 2022. While private consumption was the growth engine in summer, the recent strong increase in the number of new COVID-19 infections will slow consumer spending during winter. Absent Q3 details we now expect GDP to stagnate in the winter half, but acknowledge the increasing risks of negative quarters. Given the upward revisions to H1 (published with the Q3 GDP flash) this would still result in an average growth rate of 2.5% yoy for 2021. Further upside surprises at all stages of inflation have, despite an increasing tightness in the labour market, not (yet) started a price-wage spiral. Also in this issue: The next German government is in the making. [more]
7
September 8, 2021
Region:
The consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic, ambitious climate policies, persistently negative interest rates, and large-scale security purchases by the ECB are increasingly raising the issue of a fair distribution. Policymakers tend to focus on the symptoms in order to appease their voters – and in doing so, they often neglect the root causes. [more]
8
September 6, 2021
Region:
With less than three weeks to go until the German federal election, we put together a succinct presentation to address the following questions:

#1: Is the SPD boom yet another spike in voter preferences – that is going to mean-revert?
#2: How do policy platforms compare and where are the parties’ red lines?
#3: Which coalition option is most likely to materialize?
#4: Is a leftish red-red-green coalition a possibility at all?
#5: Are there any procedural stumbling blocks? How long might the Merkel government act as a caretaker government?
#6: What could fiscal, climate, distribution, and housing policies look like in a new three-way coalition?
#7: What is the likely impact on Germany’s potential growth?

In addition to summarizing our election outlook, we include snapshots of recently published research on how key policy areas like climate, energy, EU, distribution, and fiscal policy might be shaped by the next government. [more]
9
August 26, 2021
Region:
Polls are in flux. The SPD – pulled up by popular frontrunner FM Scholz – has exploited the conservatives’ ongoing weakness and turned a seemingly hopeless endeavour into a neck-and-neck race. In parallel, the Greens are stumbling. In the midst of this volatile political atmosphere, postal voting has started. As most postal voters intend to cast their vote quickly, there is little time left for the faltering conservatives and Greens to regain voters’ support. [more]
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