EFN Report Spring 2009: Economic Outlook for the Euro Area in 2009 and 2010
For much of 2009, falling external demand will be the main drag on production in the euro area, with exports expected to decrease by about 13% in 2009. At the same time, the structural problems of the financial sector, combined with the uncertainty on future economic perspectives, will continue to impede investment, which will be reduced by about 6% in 2009. Consumers will benefit from the increase in real wages that started in the summer of 2008 and will – due to the slow reaction of wage setting to the business cycle in most European countries – continue for the year 2009. Thus, private consumption will, albeit shrinking modestly (-0.6%) because of rising unemployment, be a stabilizing factor for the economy in the euro area. A positive contribution will also come from public consumption, whose growth is forecasted at 1% for 2009 and 0.5% for 2010.