German Business Looks Past Virus To Start Spring Upbeat
German business confidence brightened considerably in March, a key survey showed Friday, despite the third wave of the pandemic raging through Europe's top economy
Frankfurt, (APP - UrduPoint / Pakistan Point News - 26th Mar, 2021 ):German business confidence brightened considerably in March, a key survey showed Friday, despite the third wave of the pandemic raging through Europe's top economy.
The Ifo institute's monthly confidence barometer, based on a survey of 9,000 companies, jumped 3.9 points from February to 96.6 points.
"It was the best score since June 2019," Ifo president Clemens Fuest said in a statement.
The survey beat the expectation of analysts surveyed by Factset who had pencilled in a steady score of 93 points.
The strong result reflected companies reporting that they were both happier about the current situation in the economy and optimistic about the outlook for the coming months.
"Despite the growing number of infections, the German economy is starting the spring confident," Fuest said.
However the picture was widely mixed based on which sector you looked at.
While manufacturing and the services sector are enjoying a rebound, tourism and gastronomy are suffering the effects of a months-long shutdown with no prospects yet for a reopening.
The pleasant surprise of the closely watched indicator as a whole in March is only a "snapshot in view of the renewed tightening of measures made necessary by the British variant of the virus," warned Fritzi Koehler-Geib, chief economist at KfW bank.
The full economic recovery "will still take time" while the third wave of infections is rife, she said.
Germany has allowed schools to partially resume and reopened hairdressers and some shops but this week extended restrictions for restaurants, bars and the leisure sector into April.
Germany, the EU's most populous country, has recorded more than 2.7 million Covid-19 cases since the start of the pandemic, and over 75,000 deaths.
Gross Domestic Product (GDP) shrank by five percent in 2020, its worst contraction since the financial crisis of 2009, due to economic fallout from the pandemic.
The government has forecast a three-percent rebound this year but the uncertain future of the latest outbreak could force Berlin to again revise the estimate downward.