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According to the latest research by the Munich-based CESifo institute, the business climate for industry and trade in Germany has improved once again in August. For the second time in succession German firms have assessed their current business situation clearly less negatively.
However, in comparison to conditions one year ago, the situation of firms is still considerably worse at the moment. With regard to business developments in the coming half year, survey participants are less sceptical than they were in July.
The German economy is slowly recovering from its descent. In manufacturing the business climate is less unfavourable than in the previous month. Some easing of the difficult business situation has occurred, according to the survey responses. Nevertheless, on the whole firms are dissatisfied with current business, but they no longer expect a worsening in the coming half year.
Manufacturing firms have also given less sceptical assessments of their export opportunities. Planned reductions of their staff levels are no longer quite so sharp. Still, their plans remained clearly geared towards cuts in employment.
The business climate in wholesaling has clearly improved. The current business situation has been assessed noticeably less sceptically by the firms than in the previous month. The wholesalers are also less reserved with regard to the six-month outlook. In retailing the business climate index has equally risen.
Although retailers are again slightly more dissatisfied with their current business situation, they are less pessimistic regarding business developments in the coming six months.
In construction the business climate has also brightened. Survey participants have assessed their present business slightly more favourably than in the previous month. With regard to future business, their caution remains largely unchanged.
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