I have been saying that I expect German data to disappoint and come in on the softer side. Why? German Ifo numbers suggest improving business confidence even though German data has been relatively weak.
For example, German retail sales for February were weak as were the German PMI numbers. Germany printed 48.4 which is below the expansion divide. Just today, we got further confirmation of the weakness in the data with German manufacturing shrinking at the largest pace since 2009. Either the German businessmen know something that we don't or their confidence is completely misguided. I am betting it is more the latter than the former. And so while I think German numbers will hold up well compared to the rest of the euro zone, they will come in below expectations.
After all, I did say ...
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Edward Harrison is the founder of Credit Writedowns and a former career diplomat, investment banker and technology executive with over twenty five years of business experience. He has also been a regular economic and financial commentator in print and on television for the past decade. He speaks six languages and reads another five, skills he uses to provide a more global perspective. Edward holds an MBA in Finance from Columbia University and a BA in Economics from Dartmouth College.