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Heavy traffic on Friedrichstrasse, Berlin
Germany is a bit more avoided by a technical recession after its flat growth in the fourth quarter, raising fears that Europe's biggest economy is still slowing down. Preliminary data show an increase of 0.0% in the fourth quarter of the previous quarter, the German Federal Statistical Office Destatis reported on Thursday, according to Reuters forecast of 0.1%.
Destatis added that "positive contributions" in the fourth quarter were from domestic demand, "however, the development of foreign trade has not contributed positively to growth in the fourth quarter."
The latest data on growth in Germany comes after a period of internal irritation, especially for the car industry that has fallen into it, and global concerns about trade, import tariffs and growth.
Fourth quarter data show that Germany has narrowly avoided a recession – defined as two consecutive quarters of decline in growth. But this is not good for Europe, which sees Germany as a traditional driver of growth in the region. After a dynamic start in the first half of the year (+ 0.4% in the first quarter, + 0.5% in the second quarter), the second half saw a small decline (-0.2% in the third quarter, 0.0% in the fourth quarter.) For the entire 2018 this was an increase of 1.4%,