International Finance

ifo Business Climate for Eastern Germany remains unchanged at year end

The outlook for the year ahead remains very positive

Eastern German businesses end the year in high spirits. The ifo Business Climate Index for Eastern Germany remained almost unchanged at 113.9 points in December. Assessments of the current business situation improved slightly, while business expectations were somewhat less optimistic than last month. The outlook for the year ahead, however, remains very positive.

In eastern German manufacturing sentiment weakened marginally, but remains at a very high level. The manufacturers surveyed expressed slightly less confidence in their six-month business outlook. They also expected stronger stimuli from exports than in recent months and were slightly happier with ongoing business.

Eastern German wholesalers marginally scaled back both their assessments of the current business situation and their business expectations in December, following last month’s modest increase in both sub-components. The business climate also clouded over in eastern German retailing. Despite slightly better ongoing business (seasonally-adjusted), retailers were clearly less confident about the next six months. They also expect prices to continue to rise.

In eastern German construction the business climate brightened after deteriorating for two consecutive months. Contractors were more satisfied with their ongoing business than in November and strongly upwardly revised their business expectations for the first half of 2018.

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