German investor confidence picks up in September

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Confidence among investors in Germany continued a rebound from summer lows in September, a regular survey showed Wednesday, but remained in negative territory.

The ZEW economic institute's barometer, based on a poll of 197 analysts and financial players, added 3.1 points for a reading of -10.6.

While the survey period saw currency crises in Turkey and Argentina worsen and weak industrial production and orders data at home, "the outlook for Germany improved slightly despite these unfavourable effects," ZEW president Achim Wambach said.

"Significant fears among participants regarding economic developments have calmed slightly again, which might be down to the new trade agreement between the United States and Mexico" reached in late August, he added.

Any signs that President Donald Trump's protectionist instincts are being soothed is welcome for Germany, whose economy with its massive trade surplus and powerful multinational firms is sensitive to new barriers to international exchange.

Aside from respondents' brighter expectations for Germany in the coming months, their judgement of the present situation in both Germany and the 19-nation eurozone improved, as did their view of the outlook for the single currency area.

But despite the less gloomy picture, September's headline reading remains well below the ZEW survey's long-term average of 22.9 points.


© 2018 AFP

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