Of course, I could be accused of only latching-on to the data that suits me, and it is true that there has been some reasonably optimistic reporting about the German economy of late: we had the German IFO index, and there was the apparently world cup driven consumer confidence index rise. So todays news that retaill sales fell by 1.4 % in December as compared with November while German unemployment rose in January for the first time in four months must have come as a bucket of cold water for some. Not here at Afoe though, since at least one of us has been stubbornly maintaining (and here) that a sustained internal consumption driven recovery was one thing which was definitely *off the cards*.
“Unexpectedly weak German retail sales figures for December have setback hopes that Europeâ€™s largest economy is staging a comeback. Retail sales in the Christmas month tumbled by 1.4 per cent compared with November, according to the federal statistics office. Economists had expected a rise. The figures will heighten fears that overall German growth weakened at the end of last year.”
“Unemployment in Germany rose in January for the first time in four months, the Federal Labour Office reported today. The seasonally adjusted jobless total increased by 69,000 to 4.699 million from December, pushing the rate to 11.3 from 11.2 percent. In unadjusted terms, the jobless total rose by 408,000 to 5.012 million, taking the rate to 12.1 percent.“