Ken Wattret, Chief European Economist, talks about our latest Europe Watch publication
Economics: ECB meeting – what to expect
- Upbeat on growth, cautious on core inflation; financial conditions a concern
- Easing bias should go but probably stays for now; exit discussion more likely Politics: Italian elections draw near; May’s wobbles
- A risky autumn election in Italy is looking more likely
- PM May still in pole position but weakened by a poor campaign Markets: Dancing round the May pol...
- Germany & EA both growing above-potential, inflation rising
- Less inordinate ECB stimulus to be announced this summer
- Rising euro vs. dollar later in 2017 to put pressure on Italy
- Germany to accept fiscal union, or Italexit a risk in 2018-19
- Ultra-cheap euro, huge trade surplus: a cause of Brexit-Trump
- World impatient with prolonged resolution of new euro-crisis
- German domestic imbalances could shrink over 10-15 years
- Baby boomers retire – saving down. Immigration raises capex
The euro area LI continues to put in an above consensus call. It is probably over predicting growth somewhat but its strength is fundamentally underpinned by the newly emerged German locomotive. While German demand often turns out to be derived from others, chiefly China, in this case it is genuine. In fact, this is highlighted by our below consensus Australia call. China’s stimulus has not fed through to a rebound in private demand, although easing PPI deflation is helping manufacturers.
Euro area GDP was a tad disappointing in Q2 but, overall, European data remain solid. We expect above-trend growth (1½%) over the next 12 months, although at a marginally slower pace. Spain has been outperforming the rest of the region while Italy remains the laggard, a trend that is likely to continue. To find out more, click above to watch the video or below for the full report.
With central banks ready to raid their emergency tool kits and the ECB rapidly absorbing most of the euro area’s bond market, it is perhaps understandable that Brexit hasn’t triggered a wider deterioration in European financial conditions. The economy however will take a hit in coming months as the UK is an important market for many euro area exporters. That said, Brexit has had a significant impact on European banks, especially Italian lenders. Currently, Italian non-performing loans stand at around €210bn-360bn, or around 20% of GDP. Click above to wat...