Strong economic recovery postponed to the coming year

Kiel / Berlin (dpa) – The hoped-for strong economic upturn in Germany after the Corona crisis has been a long time coming.

According to economists, the economic recovery will fall this year mainly due to a lack of materials industry, but also continued precautionary measures in the pandemic, weaker than initially predicted. In the coming year, Europe’s largest economy is expected to gain even more momentum. According to a study, individual industries benefit very differently from the upswing.

“The catching-up process remains intact, but will get a dent over the winter half-year,” said Stefan Kooths, economic director of the Institute for the World Economy (IfW) on Thursday the presentation of the current IfW forecast. Like other economic research institutes, the IfW cut its forecast for the current year. In the opinion of the researchers, existing precautionary measures to protect against infection and supply bottlenecks in industry are still dampening development. Due to a shortage of materials, for example in the case of semiconductors, the industry can currently only process its well-filled order books to a limited extent and has to take the brakes on production. Delivery delays can be the result.

With the initially weaker recovery, the German economy will probably not reach its pre-crisis level until the first quarter 2022, according to the IfW, and thus six months later than initially expected. The Kiel-based company is anticipating an increase in gross domestic product of 2.6 percent this year; previously they had assumed an increase of 3.9 percent. In the coming year, economic output is expected to grow strongly by 5.1 percent. “Buying power fed up with consumers and full order books in companies – this is what a self-sustaining upswing looks like,” said Kooths, describing the prospects. The corona crisis plunged the German economy into the deepest recession since the financial crisis 2009 last year. The gross domestic product collapsed by 4.9 percent.

According to the research and consulting company Prognos, not all industries will benefit to the same extent from the upswing. The experts are predicting growth in economic output of 5.4 percent for the industry this year; in the service sector as a whole, they are expecting a lower increase of 3.0 percent. Numerous domestic market-oriented service providers were weakened again by the restrictions to combat the third wave of pandemics last winter. The lockdown had hit the hospitality industry and parts of the retail sector, among other things 9.5 percent) and mechanical engineering (plus 7.1 percent), which are benefiting from the upturn in the global economy. The experts also believe that the metal industry, electrical engineering and the rubber and plastics sectors will see an above-average recovery or almost stagnate. “These examples show that even a strong upswing cannot stop structural change,” says the study.

According to Prognos, the growth winners in the service sector will be restaurants, hotels and other accommodation providers. After the historical slump in the Corona crisis year, economic output 2021 in the hospitality industry is likely to increase by around 20 percent. In the coming year, the experts believe an increase of 29 percent is possible.

Numerous economic research institutes, but also bank economists, had their economic forecasts for the past few days current year lowered and raised for 2022. “The strong recovery after Corona, which was originally expected for the summer, continues to be postponed,” said Ifo economic director Timo Wollmershäuser also described the development. Economists expect good news from the labor market. They assume that the number of unemployed will fall and short-time work will continue to be cut.

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