Wednesday 19 May 2010

Germany April 2010: Business Climate Remains Buoyant

Results of the Ifo Business Survey for April 2010

OECD Economic Surveys: Germany 2010The Ifo Business Climate for industry and trade in Germany improved again strongly in April. The firms are considerably more satisfied with their current business situation, this survey component having now improved strongly for the second month in succession. Also with regard to the business outlook for the coming half year, the surveyed firms are again more optimistic than before. The German economy has shifted into a higher gear.
In manufacturing the business climate index has risen once more. The manufacturing firms have again given clearly more favourable assessments of their business situation. Also with regard to their business expectations in the coming half year they are more hopeful than in the previous month. They also see better opportunities for exports. Currently, the firms are utilising their equipment and machines at a clearly stronger rate than at the beginning of the year. The capacity utilisation rate in industry is now somewhat below the long-term average. Company plans to reduce personnel are again more seldom.
The business situation has also brightened further in retailing and in wholesaling. In both distribution sectors the firms have assessed their current business situation more positively than before. They also view the six-month outlook less critically.
In construction the business climate index has fallen slightly after having risen four times in succession. The current business situation is assessed by the building contractors as clearly more favourable than in the previous month. However, with regard to business developments in the coming six months they are not quite as optimistic as they were in March. 

Hans-Werner Sinn
President of the Ifo Institute for Economic Research at the University of Munich

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