News • 02.08.2018

German consumer climate remains stable

Findings of the GfK consumer climate study for June 2018

Berlin; Copyright: panthermedia/netsborisov
Source: panthermedia.netsborisov

The trade conflict between the EU and the USA is intensifying and leaves a clear mark on the consumer mood in Germany in June. Economic optimism clearly declines, while both income expectations and propensity to buy manage to hold their ground with slight upward growth. GfK forecasts that the level will remain unchanged in July in comparison to the previous month at 10.7 points.

The route taken by the US President in terms of the trade policy towards the EU is causing concern, especially where economic expectations are concerned. These suffered clear losses. In contrast, the income expectations and propensity to buy are managing to hold up, even making slight gains in June. The consumer climate remains stable as a result. 

Trade conflict causes economic expectations to slide further

Following the stable development in the previous month, economic expectations saw a notable decline in June. The indicator dropped 14.1 points to 23.3 points. The last time it showed such a low value was over a year ago, in March 2017, when it stood at 18.1 points. This represents a drop of 18 points compared with last year.

The American President's protectionist trade policy, which affects both Germany and other export-oriented countries such as China, casts further gloom over the economic forecast. As a consequence of this weakening, economic experts are currently predicting that the economic dynamics of the global economy will decline. This will naturally also affect Germany as an export nation. Both the German Institute for Economic Research (DIW) and the ifo Institute assume that the German economy will drop down a gear this year. They have therefore revised down their GDP (Gross Domestic Product) forecast for this year by around half a percent. They now forecast a growth this year of 1.9 and 1.8 percent respectively. 

Income expectations stay strong in a more unsettled economic environment

Despite the worsening economic prospects, income expectations were able to hold their ground in June and even exceeded once again what was already an excellent level. Following an increase of 3.4 points, the indicator currently stands at 57.6 points. The last time the level rose higher than this was in August 2017, when it reached 61.4 points.

The ongoing excellent employment prospects are apparently outweighing the current negative global economic influences on the indicator. In addition, both workers and pensioners can hope to see respectable income gains this year. Even the recent rise in inflation rates does not seem to have made much of an impression on consumers so far.

Propensity to buy in the wake of stable income expectations

Consumers' propensity to buy has also profited this month from the very stable trend in income expectations. At 56.3 points, the indicator has maintained a very good level. Compared to the previous month it even achieved a slight increase of 0.4 points. The trend currently shows a sideways movement.

The propensity to buy is still benefiting from an employment market that is in good shape. Employment is up and there has been another slight fall in unemployment. Furthermore, there is also little fear of job losses among employees. This leads to planning security, especially where bigger purchases or spending is concerned. 

The jump in the inflation rate in May this year to 2.2 percent, which was mainly due to a significant rise in energy prices, has apparently not yet had any effect on propensity to consume. 

Consumer climate unchanged

For July 2018, GfK forecasts that the level will remain unchanged at 10.7 points. This means that the consumer climate is stabilizing after two slight declines in a row.

In contrast to the excellent domestic conditions, such as employment and income development, the domestic economy looks likely to suffer from the escalating trade conflict with the USA coupled with the higher inflation rates, which rose to 2.2 percent in May. Even if this may just be a temporary rise, it can be assumed that it could have negative effects on the real development of private consumer spending. Since the global economy is also slightly less dynamic at present, GfK is revising its consumer forecast issued at the beginning of this year from 2 to 1.5 percent. 

However, the consumer economy in Germany remains intact, even if it is slightly less dynamic. This will also depend on whether the new government in Italy fans the flames of the Euro crisis once more and whether the conflict about refugee policy in Europe can be settled. 

Source: GfK

related articles:

popular articles:

Thumbnail-Photo: Denmarks largest garden center chain is chasing a green profile...
26.06.2019   #sustainability #electronic shelf labels (ESL)

Denmark's largest garden center chain is chasing a green profile

Electronic shelf labels for paper reduction

Plantorama introduces electronic shelf labels in all stores, which significantly reduces the chain's paper consumption. The project will strengthen the chain's green profile and will have a positive influence on the customer experience and ...

Thumbnail-Photo: Silver Surfers: Older adults ride the wave of mobile technology and shop...
01.08.2019   #online trading #e-commerce

Silver Surfers: Older adults ride the wave of mobile technology and shop online

The increasing importance of e-commerce for senior citizens

You are wrong if you think it’s mostly young people who spend time online. Older adults are also increasingly embracing online shopping with enthusiasm.In this interview, Spencer Hinzen, Director of Sales, Central Region, Ruckus Networks, ...

Thumbnail-Photo: retail trends 3-2019: focus checkout zone
16.09.2019   #mobile payment #customer satisfaction

retail trends 3-2019: focus "checkout zone"

Shopfitting, technology, marketing: What does a checkout have to do nowadays?

Read our latest edition retail trends 3-2019 online as an e-paper. ...

Thumbnail-Photo: Retail cash loss – Addressing the problem with intelligent technology...
25.09.2019   #security #cash management

Retail cash loss – Addressing the problem with intelligent technology

One of the major shrink related issues faced by retailers

Any business that accepts cash for transactions has come to expect that some percentage of it will vanish as a result of fraud, administrative errors and employee misdeeds.Inventory shrink, which includes cash loss, costs retailers an estimated 47 ...

Thumbnail-Photo: App creates personalised shopping experience...
26.08.2019   #mobile payment #app

App creates personalised shopping experience

The Swiss trading company Valora is opening its first cashless convenience store

The goods are chosen, scanned and paid for using the avec smartphone app. Mobile computer vision specialists Scandit’s scan engine is a key component of the customer-facing app. The future of shopping - whether online or offline - is ...

Thumbnail-Photo: Sales assistant Remy talks about strange customers and emotional...
25.07.2019   #customer satisfaction #pos marketing

Sales assistant Remy talks about strange customers and emotional decisions

An interview with a fictitious robot that works in retail

There is a lot of hype surrounding humanoid, socially intelligent robots and what they can do. They are interviewed, filmed and tested. Oftentimes, it’s to find out how consumers feel about the machines and how they are accepted by users and ...

Thumbnail-Photo: When customers become cashiers
01.10.2019   #epos systems #mobile payment

When customers become cashiers

Treading a fine line between traditional and visionary, between checkouts and codes

For years, we have done this in online stores: we fill our shopping cart, click to pay and are excited about our purchase. Thanks to the snabble app - now available at the Knauber Hobbymarkt in Bonn and at IKEA in Frankfurt – consumers can ...

Thumbnail-Photo: 45th anniversary of the barcode in retail
01.07.2019   #barcode scanner #qr code

45th anniversary of the barcode in retail

GS1 US celebrates the barcode’s relevance as the backbone of commerce

GS1 US®, the information standards organization best known as the administrator of UPC barcodes, this week celebrates 45 years since the debut and first scan of the iconic barcode. On June 26, 1974, a pack of Wrigley's chewing gum carrying a ...

Thumbnail-Photo: Well cooled shopping entertainment, please!
15.07.2019   #refrigeration cabinets #refrigerated counters

Well cooled shopping entertainment, please!

What about modern refrigeration technology?

Pierluigi Schiesaro and Gian Paolo Di Marco from Arneg, a company focusing on food service equipments, talk about refrigeration systems as "shopping entertainment".They also tell us what sustainable refrigeration could look like and why ...

Thumbnail-Photo: Retail Asia Conference & Expo (RACE)
07.10.2019   #online trading #retail

Retail Asia Conference & Expo (RACE)

As the leading retail exhibition in Asia, RACE is taken place from 6 – 8 May 2020.

As the leading retail exhibition in Asia, RACE is recognised as the must-join event among the industry’s most influential retailers and customers. RACE features three focus areas: Retail technology, retail design & in-store marketing ...


Superdata GmbH
Superdata GmbH
Ruhrstr. 90
22761 Hamburg
iXtenso - Magazin für den Einzelhandel
iXtenso - Magazin für den Einzelhandel
Celsiusstraße 43
53125 Bonn
APG Cash Drawer
APG Cash Drawer
4 The Drove
BN9 0LA Newhaven
Permaplay Media Solutions GmbH
Permaplay Media Solutions GmbH
Aschmattstr. 8
76532 Baden-Baden
Delfi Technologies GmbH
Delfi Technologies GmbH
Landgraben 75
24232 Schönkirchen