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  1. German Companies Enjoy Increasingly Easy Access to Bank Credit

    teaserImage German companies can currently access bank credit without any major difficulties. Credit constraints for German trade and industry fell to 17.4 percent in December from 18.3 percent last month. This corresponds to the historical low reached in May 2014. As the year draws to a close, the financial environment for German firms therefore remains very good. In turbulent times German companies are seen as a safe harbour for investment capital. Details

  2. Ifo Business Climate for Eastern Germany Ends Year Brighter

    teaserImage The Ifo Business Climate Index for the Eastern German Länder rose sharply in December. Assessments of the current situation by Eastern German survey participants remained good. Business expectations for the first six months of 2015 were markedly more favourable. As the year draws to a close, positive signals prevail in the Eastern German economy. Details

  3. The Power of Smaller Trade Unions: Should the Influence of Branch Trade Unions be Curbed?

    teaserImage Continued strikes at the Deutsche Bahn and Lufthansa are fuelling discontent with branch trade unions. Should legislators curtail multiple collective bargaining agreements by smaller unions and their scope to take action? This issue is discussed in ifo Schnelldienst 24/2014 by Norbert Berthold, University of Würzburg, Claus Schnabel, University of Erlangen-Nuremberg, Hagen Lesch, Institut der deutschen Wirtschaft Köln, Michael Fuchs, CDU/CSU parliamentary party, and Klaus Dauderstädt, dbb beamtenbund und tarifunion. Details

  4. Ifo Architects Survey: Order Backlogs Fall Markedly

    teaserImage The business climate clouded over slightly at the beginning of the fourth quarter of 2014 according to the results of the Ifo Institute’s survey of freelance architects. It nevertheless remains very friendly. Details

  5. Export Outlook Continues to Improve for Manufacturing

    teaserImage German manufacturing can look forward to rising exports. The Ifo Export Expectations rose to 7.0 balance points in December from 6.3 in November. This marks the third increase in succession. German exporters are benefiting from the falling euro exchange rate. The expected economic upturn will largely be driven by exports once again. Details

  6. Sweeping Reform of Inheritance Tax

    teaserImage Ifo President Hans-Werner Sinn has spoken out in favour of a sweeping reform of inheritance tax. “The statement by the German Constitutional Court on inheritance tax should give rise to reform,” says Sinn. Rates should be low enough and tax exemptions high enough to ensure that incentives to accumulate inheritable wealth are not curtailed too excessively. Details

  7. Ifo Business Climate Index Continues to Rise

    teaserImage The Ifo Business Climate Index for industry and trade in Germany rose to 105.5 points in December from 104.7 points last month. Positive assessments of the current business situation remained unchanged. The outlook for the months ahead continued to brighten. Dropping oil prices and a falling euro exchange rate are seasonal gifts to the German economy. Details

  8. German Service Sector: Ifo Business Climate for the Service Sector Improves Significantly

    teaserImage The Ifo Business Climate Indicator for the German service sector rose in December to 25.6 balance points, from 19.4 points in the previous month. Very favourable assessments of the current business situation continued to improve. Service providers are also far more optimistic about future business developments than in previous months, with expectations rising to their highest level since July 2011. Service providers, especially in the hotel and restaurant industry, still plan to further increase prices. Details

  9. Structural Analysis of the Eastern German Chemicals Industry

    teaserImage The chemicals and pharmaceutical industries are major drivers of growth in the German economy. On the basis of the turnover generated by these industries domestically and abroad, they are among the biggest sectors in Germany. Moreover, thanks to its upstream position in the value chain, the chemicals industry in particular is essential to preserving a large number of jobs in other economic sectors. These are the results of a comprehensive overview of the chemical and pharmaceutical industries in Eastern Germany conducted by the Dresden branch of the Ifo Institute on behalf of the Verband der Chemischen Industrie, Landesverband Nordost, and the Arbeitgeberverband Nordostchemie. Details

  10. Housing Market Works in Different Ways Across Germany

    teaserImage The regional rental price level can be explained by factors like disposable income levels, migration trends, characteristics of existing housing and current vacancy rates. These are the results of a recent evaluation of differences in rental prices in Eastern and Western Germany by the Dresden branch of the Ifo Institute. However, the factors cited above have a different impact on rental prices from region to region. Clear differences in the housing markets in Eastern and Western Germany still exist 25 years after German reunification. Details

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