German January ZEW jumped to -31.0 from -45.2 in December. This was much better than our forecast and median of -45.0 and the third consecutive improvement, which suggests that the ZEW has bottomed out and backs hopes that growth will stabilize in Q3 and start to improve in the second half of the year. The ZEW said the second stimulus package helped to lift confidence and investors are becoming more confident with regard to the second half of the year. The construction sector is also looking more positive and ECB cuts should help to stabilize the economy. So far readings remain firmly in negative territory, however and far below the long term average, so a set back is still possible, even though the central scenario is for a gradual recovery from H2.
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