Germany: German consumer confidence moderates, but remains robust in April
March 24, 2016
In April, the mood among German consumers ticked down somewhat. The forward-looking consumer confidence indicator published by the GfK Group inched down from March’s 9.5 points to 9.4 points in April, which slightly undershot market expectations of the index resting at 9.5 points. Consumer confidence has been hovering around 9.4 points since November. Overall, the GfK commented that, “after a positive start to the year, the consumer climate has now taken a small hit. However, the level remains good, with consumer sentiment still intact.”
In addition to the overall consumer confidence indicator, which estimates consumer sentiment in the coming month, the GfK elaborates on three sub-indicators, which refer to March. Households’ expectations for the overall economy fell in March, just barely holding in positive territory. The GfK noted that, “it seems clear that worldwide economic risks, particularly the economic decline in Germany's important export countries such as China and the USA, have not left consumers unaffected. This is because of the impact that can be expected on both the export outlook and German companies' propensity to invest.” Consumers’ income expectations and willingness to buy both also moderated in March, but still remained at high levels. According to the GfK, a strong labor market and low inflation are supporting income expectations and household’s propensity to buy.