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Germany

Germany has recovered well from the global financial and euro crisis. To make sure that the future challenges are successfully addressed, a balance between sustainable growth and social participation are essential. To achieve these objectives further reforms are needed as well as an improvement of the macroeconomic framework. Policymakers, businesspeople and the public must face up to their responsibilities. DB Research analyses the economic and political conflicting ideas and incorporates possible solutions into economic and political outlooks. These are based on national sector research, global business cycle and financial forecasts as well as the assessment of international political developments.

356 (21-30)
September 3, 2021
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Analyst:
The goal is clear: In the future, Germany’s energy needs are to be met to the largest possible extent by electricity from renewable sources. This will entail high initial expenses for companies and households, as existing infrastructure will have to be retrofitted or replaced. At the same time, companies and households have seen electricity prices rise more strongly than petrol, diesel, natural gas or heating oil prices over the last few years. This suggests that policymakers should reduce the state components of electricity prices as quickly as possible. This would have favourable social-policy effects and strengthen Germany’s position as an industrial hub, particularly since it has already suffered considerably from electricity-price-related burdens. [more]
21
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]
22
August 23, 2021
Region:
While the Conservatives’ position in the polls seems to be in free fall for now, the FDP has regained standing with the voters just in time for the federal election in September. According to current polls, only three-way party coalitions have a majority, hence, the Liberals could end up as the new kingmakers, clearly favouring a coalition with the Conservatives and the Greens (Jamaica) over a traffic-light coalition with the SPD and the Greens. But there are still five weeks to go and the election race is as open as ever. [more]
23
August 19, 2021
Region:
For the German federal elections in September, about 60m voters are called to cast their ballot. Despite more than half of voters being 50 years and above, it would still be too far-fetched to say that Germany has become a so-called gerontocracy, where the interests of the older dominate the political process. Moreover, the pandemic could curb participation among all age groups. [more]
24
August 10, 2021
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Analyst:
Demand for electric vehicles has recently surged. Two key drivers are behind this gain in market share: Tight caps on vehicle CO2 emissions combined with the classification of electric cars as zero-emission vehicles and subsidies to buyers of electric cars. The transition to e-mobility helps to protect the climate. The contribution to climate protection will rise over time due to technological progress and scale effects in production. However, it is small and expensive for now. For every one million electric cars sold in Germany in the next few years, the total fiscal effect amounts to at least EUR 15 bn over the twelve years after the sale. Carbon abatement costs may amount to more than EUR 1,000 per ton. The current regulatory regime is obviously neither efficient from an economic vantage point nor effective in environmental protection terms. [more]
25
July 30, 2021
Region:
Net migration towards Germany was much lower in 2020 than pre-COVID. The migration flows from outside of the EU were particularly hampered whereas migration within the EU fell by 'only' 5% compared to 2019. As a consequence, the new demand for housing was much lower than in previous years which helped to reduce the housing shortage. By contrast, the lack of qualified and non-qualified workers in the labour market has become more severe through the pandemic. [more]
26
July 27, 2021
Region:
The recent flood caused by heavy rain was among the most severe natural disasters hitting Germany since reunification. More than 170 people lost their lives and many private homes and public buildings, roads and municipal infrastructure were destroyed. Since the flooding occurred in regions with low industrial density, the expected negative impact on overall economic activity, in particular on industrial production, should be relatively limited. Still, the regional impact on agricultural production (such as wine-growing) might be significant. Some of the most recent polls already fully capture post-flood views. As expected, there is no big shift in voter preferences. The events will likely confirm voters' previous choices. [more]
27
July 22, 2021
Region:
Germany has weathered the COVID-19 crisis better than most other EMU partners. With a much smaller output gap and additional headwinds from several structural trends it is more prone to experience higher inflation, in fact, it already has. Given that the ECB will aim its policy towards the EMU average inflation, German inflation could exceed the 2% mark for several years, without triggering an ECB policy response. The ECB's new strategy with the increased 2% symmetric inflation target - implying the acceptance of inflation overshoots - and its announced preparedness to wait until it is fully convinced that its policy has worked before adjusting its policy, make such a scenario even more likely. [more]
28
July 12, 2021
Region:
All eyes are on the next government’s EU fiscal stance. The Greens are advocating looser debt rules and turning the NGEU into a permanent fiscal capacity. However, in the two most plausible coalition scenarios, the Greens have to find common ground with either the Conservatives (black-green coalition) or the Liberals (traffic light coalition). Both call for re-instating the debt rules in the post-pandemic world and emphasize the one-off nature of the NGEU. Thus, we do not expect any significant shift of Germany’s EU fiscal policy course. The odds of an election surprise contributing to a stronger EUR remain low. The autumn debate about the reform of the SGP will be the first proof of this new/old fiscal stance. Beyond the immediate focus of financial markets, we also sketch which impulses we expect from the next German government in the areas of EU climate, trade, foreign policies and institutional reform. With respect to putting the Green Deal to work, we expect Germany to role-model green transformation at measured pace. The German response to this week’s “Fit for 55” legislative proposals is likely to be mixed. [more]
29
July 1, 2021
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Analyst:
The spread of the delta variant will divert tourist flows in the 2021 summer season when individual holiday countries – such as Portugal recently – are classified as areas of variants of concern. However, delta is also likely to become dominant in Germany and other European countries in the near future. The question therefore arises as to how long the classification of countries with a high share of delta as areas of variants of concern can be justified. Ultimately, the classification into risk area and high incidence area might again be more reasonable. If a protection concept is lacking at schools after the summer vacations and delta leads to disruptions in school operations, this could influence the voting decisions of many people. [more]
30
29.10.8