It will be crunch time for Germany this week. That is because the so-called economic locomotive for the European economy risks facing negative economic growth if GDP data show output has indeed shrunk during the second quarter. That would mean the leader has become the laggard versus other European economies. That said, other countries also face hardship, especially if the political tension already present, or simmering, goes from bad to worse. Italy is in crisis, but Spain has no government, nor has Belgium. Elections are to be held in Poland, Portugal and Austria, all adding to uncertainty. And then there’s always Brexit weighing on the UK. The second quarter saw negative growth to the tune of -0.2%. Meanwhile in France, industrial production in June nosedived. The European Central Bank will have to deliver big time on 12 September. However, market rates have already plunged. The 10-year Bund yield is now close to minus 60bps, incredible is it not?
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