Germany: Consumer optimism improves in December
November 27, 2013
The GfK forward-looking consumer confidence indicator increased to 7.4 points in December, which marked a significant improvement over the 7.1 points recorded in November. The upward-moving trend that began in March continues and the indicator now sits at the highest level in over six years. The increase came as a surprise to the market, which had expected the index to remain unchanged at 7.1 points.
In addition to the overall consumer confidence indicator for December, the GfK also provides three sub-indicators on consumer confidence for the previous month. According to the sub-indicators for November, consumers' economic expectations improved notably over the previous month, as did their income expectations. Households' willingness to buy major items increased moderately in November. The GfK explained that this indicator is already at an, "extremely high level, partly stimulated by the European Central Bank lowering interest rates."
FocusEconomics Consensus Forecast panelists expect private consumption to expand 0.9% this year, which is down 0.1 percentage points from last month's estimate. For 2014, panelists see private consumption growing 1.3%, which is unchanged from last month's forecasts.
Author: Ricardo Aceves, Senior Economist