German economy to shrink slightly in Q4 – economist

FILE PHOTO: People wear protective face masks as they walk beside Christmas decoration amid the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak in Berlin
FILE PHOTO: People wear protective face masks as they walk beside Christmas decorations at a shopping mall amid the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak in Berlin, Germany, November 21, 2020. REUTERS/Fabrizio Bensch

December 18, 2020

BERLIN (Reuters) – The German economy will shrink by 0.4% in the last three months of 2020 before growing again early next year, Ifo economist Klaus Wohlrabe said on Friday, as a lockdown to curb coronavirus infections has slowed recovery.

After German business morale rose unexpectedly in December, Wohlrabe said he expected the economy to grow by 0.6% in the first quarter, adding that industrial orders were looking good, driven by domestic customers.

“Industry has improved significantly – especially the chemical industry and mechanical engineering,” Wohlrabe said.

(Reporting by Rene Wagner; Writing by Riham Alkousaa; Editing by Maria Sheahan)