German consumers’ mood still sunny for September
FRANKFURT - Agence France-PresseThe German public is headed into autumn with its sunny summer disposition undimmed, pollster GfK said on Aug. 29, with strong confidence in future growth in Europe’s largest economy.
GfK’s forward-looking poll of around 2,000 people predicted an uptick of 0.1 points in its consumer confidence index for September, to 10.9 points -- in line with predictions from analysts surveyed by data company Factset. “Germans see the domestic economy continuing on an excellent path,” the pollsters commented.
Looking in detail at the results, consumers’ expectations for their own income hit a new post-1991 record, while people’s readiness to make large purchases also rose compared with the previous month.
Both effects could be explained by record high levels of employment dimming workers’ fears that they might lose their jobs, GfK suggested.
But the public’s expectations for the state of the German economy in the coming months fell back sharply, falling 14.2 points to reach 30.4.
Respondents may have been unsettled by rumbling fears for the future of diesel-powered cars, GfK said, as well as worries about the future of free trade and smouldering conflicts around the globe.
“Despite the fall, German consumers still see the economy on a solid course for growth,” they added.
In other “soft” surveys of the German economy, the Ifo institute’s closely-watched business confidence index remained near record highs in August.
The ZEW institute’s investor confidence survey fell back this month, but analysts suggested the drop had more to do with the rising value of the euro against other currencies than fundamental fears for the German economy.