Germany braces for historic quarterly GDP decline on virus hit

The German economy suffered a record slump in the second quarter as coronavirus lockdowns took their toll, official data is set to show Thursday, but experts say a recovery is already under way, reports BSS/AFP.

Federal statistics agency Destatis will unveil its flash estimate at 0800 GMT, with leading research institutes forecasting that gross domestic product shrank nearly 10 percent between April and June compared with the previous quarter.

Economy Minister Peter Altmaier warned earlier this year that the pandemic would push Europe’s top economy into “the worst recession” in its postwar history, ending a decade of growth.

But it’s not all bad news.

Germany has withstood the coronavirus shock better than many of its neighbours.

Stable infection rates encouraged the country to relax coronavirus restrictions in early May, allowing factories, shops and restaurants to reopen.

Thursday’s data “is a glimpse in the rearview mirror”, ING bank analyst Carsten Brzeski told AFP.