Economic forecast: growing uncertainty regarding the global economic situation – German economy in relatively good shape
“The global economic prospects have become markedly more uncertain over the past few weeks, particularly where the emerging economies are concerned,” said Hans-Joachim Massenberg, a member of the Association of German Banks’ senior management board, when presenting the private commercial banks’ 2015/2016 economic forecast in Berlin. At the same time, the private commercial banks’ chief economists believed that concerns about a fresh global economic crisis were exaggerated. However, according to Mr Massenberg, “we’ll have to revise downward a bit what we have regarded so far as the “normal level” of global economic growth. Growth rates of over 4 per cent for the global economy are evidently no longer realistic for some time to come.”
The economic prospects for Germany were not exactly spectacular either. Despite the current slowdown in many emerging economies, the German economy would hold up well in the increasingly difficult global environment. “Yet, on the whole, the weak growth trend in Germany as well, estimated at around 1 per cent, is disappointing,” Mr Massenberg added. But a steeper growth path couldn’t be bought either by an extremely expansive monetary policy or by government spending programmes.
“Tackling weak growth both globally and domestically by implementing structural reforms on the supply side is a much more promising approach,” Mr Massenberg stressed. Anything else would – if at all – merely boost demand artificially and be a flash in the pan. “Particularly on the supply side, we still see a lot of potential for achieving more economic growth: for example, putting more women in jobs, creating a more attractive investment environment or launching an education and training offensive”.
This was where Europe in particular, which should take a critical look at its monetary union again in any case, was called upon to act. “We shouldn’t aim here at deeper integration through redistribution; given the present general framework, this can only lead to false incentives. What is much more important is removing structural economic differences between the eurozone countries,” Mr Massenberg concluded.
The current autumn economic forecast for 2015/2016 is available online (in German only) at www.bankenverband.de. It is issued every six months and is based on a survey of 13 chief economists at private commercial banks which are members of the Association of German Banks’ Economic and Monetary Policy Committee.
Carsten Klude, Chief Economist, M.M.Warburg & CO KGaA, Hamburg, Committee Chair.
Burkhard Allgeier, Chief Economist & Head of Investment Strategy, Hauck & Aufhäuser Privatbankiers KGaA, Frankfurt am Main
Dr. Marco Bargel, Chief Investment Strategist, Deutsche Postbank AG, Bonn.
Dr. Elga Bartsch, Chief Economist Europe, Morgan Stanley UK Group, London.
Dr. Jan Bottermann, Chief Economist, NATIONAL-BANK AG, Essen.
Carsten Brzeski, Chief Economist, ING-DiBa AG, Frankfurt am Main.
Dr. Jörg Krämer, Chief Economist, Commerzbank AG, Frankfurt am Main.
Dr. Martin Moryson, Chief Economist, Sal. Oppenheim jr. & Cie, AG & Co., KGaA, Köln.
Dr. Andreas Rees, Chief Economist Germany, UniCredit Bank AG, Frankfurt am Main.
Stefan Schilbe, Chief Economist, HSBC Trinkaus & Burkhardt AG, Düsseldorf.
Dr. Holger Schmieding, Chief Economist, Joh. Berenberg, Gossler & Co. KG, London.
Stefan Schneider, Chief International Economist, Deutsche Bank Gruppe, Frankfurt am Main.
Dr. Dirk Schumacher, Chief Economist Germany, Goldman, Sachs & Co. oHG,
Frankfurt am Main.
Dr. Hans-Joachim Massenberg, Member of the Senior Management Board, Association of German Banks, Berlin.
Dr. Gabriele Fuchs, Managing Director, Economic Policy and International Affairs, Association of German Banks, Berlin.
Dr. Kerstin Altendorf
Telephone: +49 30 1663-1250