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Sectors and Resources

The Sector Research team analyses cyclical and structural developments. On the basis of its findings it draws up business and policy recommendations for the major sectors. These include the important branches of industry as well as wholesale/retail, services, energy, transportation and environmental policy

191 Documents
October 8, 2021
Never since reunification have industrial companies in Germany complained as much about material bottlenecks as they do at present. In addition to physical shortages of intermediate products, rising prices are also currently problematic for companies. This is reflected in producer prices. In August 2021, they were around 12% higher than a year earlier – the biggest increase since December 1974. The latest development is not a German phenomenon. In many countries around the world, the current economic recovery is being dampened by supply bottlenecks and higher prices. Supply bottlenecks and rising prices for intermediate goods are hampering the economic recovery in the manufacturing sector. Here, new orders in August 2021 exceeded the production level by close to 22%. Overall, we expect supply chain disruptions to keep us busy into 2022, although the low point in the supply crisis may be behind us. [more]
September 8, 2021
Due to the continuing shortage of semiconductors, 2021 will be another weak year for Germany as an automotive location. Although the current economic and supply crisis may have reached its low point, a return to earlier highs is unlikely – even in the medium term. By contrast, German auto manufacturers are reporting positive results and gaining share in important markets. The discrepancy between Germany as an automotive location and the German auto industry is becoming apparent. [more]
September 3, 2021
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]
August 10, 2021
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]
July 1, 2021
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]
June 25, 2021
Climate change is one of the most important global challenges of the century. The issue essentially involves developing energy sources that are as efficient, cost-effective and low-carbon as possible. These should enable climate-friendly growth while also being politically acceptable. The transformation will entail significant limitations in terms of freedom of choice, and politics therefore needs to address social tensions. [more]
June 10, 2021
Q2 GDP should be o.k., despite April’s little stumble. Strong external demand and depleted finished goods inventories suggest a strong bounce back once current supply constraints ease. Consumers’ economic outlook and income expectations are improving. Together with an expected normalization of the savings rate that should provide a strong underpinning for consumption growth. We stick to our Q2 GDP forecast of close to 2% qoq and 4% for the whole year. The rate of inflation has been rising sharply since the start of 2021. With price dynamics continuing to outstrip expectations and given the prospect of stronger economic recovery in the summer, we now expect the annual average CPI inflation rate to rise to 2.8% in 2021, monthly numbers could even touch 4%. [more]
May 11, 2021
The Federal Constitutional Court's "climate change order" has the potential to trigger considerable political and social disruption. The greenhouse gas emission reduction targets set by policymakers will have implications for our everyday lives. Political and social resistance appears inevitable. We need better climate technologies. Better technology is key if we want to keep climate-related restrictions to individual freedom as well as political and social tensions as low as possible, both now and in the future. Perhaps we should regard the Court order as a call for much higher investments in research and development. [more]
March 25, 2021
Single-family homes have recently been drawn into the discussion about suitable climate-policy measures in Germany. However, arguing about whether and to what extent single-family homes contribute to climate change or consume more resources than multi-family homes simply draws away the attention from the real energy and climate-policy challenges in the building sector. Moreover, the discussion underlines once again that calls for certain climate-policy measures often clash with how millions of people live or would prefer to live. [more]
February 17, 2021
German GDP: Down (Q1) but not out (in 2021). The longer “hard” lockdown, weather-related losses in construction and impairments in car output due to chip supply problems have prompted us to cut our Q1 GDP forecast to -2% qoq. We continue to expect a strong rebound in the summer half propelled by healthy global demand, supportive fiscal and monetary policy and German households’ pent-up demand. Inflation: Now expecting 2% for 2021! The Jan print of 1% yoy surprised massively to the upside, in part due to one-offs. But the strong rise in core goods prices begs the question whether the Jan readings could herald stronger underlying inflation dynamics. There are still strong arguments for a continuation of structurally low inflation dynamics. However, we see risk that price dynamics could strengthen more strongly through impaired supply conditions. Overall, we now project the inflation rate to average 2.0% in 2021. Towards the end of 2021 the headline rate could spike to as much as 3% before easing to 1 ½% in Q1 2022. [more]