German Consumer Sentiment To Deteriorate Amid Lockdown: Gfk
German consumer confidence is set to deteriorate in February
under the strict lockdown restrictions, survey results from the
market research group GfK showed on Wednesday.
The forward-looking consumer sentiment index dropped 8.1 points
to -15.6 in February from -7.5 in January. The expected reading was
"The closure of the restaurant trade and large portions of the
retail sector in mid-December 2020 has had a similarly damaging
effect on consumer spending as that of the first lockdown last
spring," Rolf Bürkl, consumer expert at GfK, said.
The recent decision to extend the strict lockdown measures
dashed hopes of a speedy recovery for consumer sentiment, the
research group noted.
Propensity to buy fell sharply, while economic and income
expectations logged moderate declines in January.
The economic expectations index fell only 3.1 points to 1.3 in
January. The stable trend partly reflects the stability of the
labor market in the light of the deep recession, and also to the
fact that the manufacturing sector, a substantial part of the
German economy, has remained unaffected by closures.
The income expectations declined 6.5 points to -2.9. This was
the fourth such fall for the fourth consecutive month.
The market research group noted that the extension of the
lockdown to mid-February has also made it more likely that the
industries affected will be hit by a wave of bankruptcies. This was
fueling fears of job losses among employees, which in turn is
affecting income expectations.
The propensity to buy index plunged 36.6 points from the
previous month to zero in January.
The survey was conducted between January 7 and 18. The results
are extracted from the "GfK Consumer Climate MAXX" study and are
based on around 2,000 consumer interviews per month conducted on
behalf of the European Commission.