This is not surprising, but it is hard to see how the German economy is going to generate GDP and employment growth in 2005. Remember global trade is slowing gradually, so it is hard to see who you can rely on exports.
Retail sales in Germany, Europe’s largest economy, fell in April as unemployment held near a post- World War II record and consumer confidence slumped.
Sales, adjusted for inflation and seasonal swings, fell 3 percent from a year earlier, the Federal Statistics Office in Wiesbaden said today. Economists expected sales to be unchanged, the median of 13 forecasts in a Bloomberg survey showed. Sales in the first four months of the year fell 1 percent. The report did not give a seasonally adjusted comparison with the previous month.