Recovery Loses Momentum – Economy and Politics Still Shaped by the Pandemic
The corona pandemic has left substantial marks on the German economy and its impact is more persistent than presumed in the spring. In their autumn reports, leading German economic research institutes have revised their economic outlook downwards by roughly one percentage point for both this and next year. They now expect gross domestic product to fall by 5.4 % in 2020 (previously 4.2 %) and to grow by 4.7 % (5.8 %) in 2021 and 2.7 % in 2022. The downgrade of the forecast follows a more pessimistic assessment of the recovery, which is being held back by those sectors that are particularly dependent on social contacts. The precrisis level of output will not be reached until the end of 2021 with GDP remaining at 2.5 % below the level that would have prevailed without the pandemic. Despite massively falling back on shorttime working schemes, an estimated 820,000 jobs were lost due to the crisis. The government will run a record high budget deficit of 183 billion euros in 2020. In 2021 and 2022, deficits will remain substantial at 118 billion euros and 92 billion euros, respectively.
14.10.2020 • 21/2020
Recovery Loses Momentum ‒ Economy and Politics Still Shaped by the Pandemic
The corona pandemic leaves substantial marks in the German economy and its impact is more persistent than assumed in spring. In their autumn report, the leading German economic research institutes have revised their economic outlook downwards by roughly one percentage point for both this and next year. They now expect gross domestic product to fall by 5.4% in 2020 (previously -4.2%) and to grow by 4.7% (5.8%) in 2021 and 2.7% in 2022.
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The Effects of Fiscal Policy in an Estimated DSGE Model – The Case of the German Stimulus Packages During the Great Recession
In this paper, we analyze the effects of the stimulus packages adopted by the German government during the Great Recession. We employ a standard medium-scale dynamic stochastic general equilibrium (DSGE) model extended by non-optimizing households and a detailed fiscal sector. In particular, the dynamics of spending and revenue variables are modeled as feedback rules with respect to the cyclical components of output, hours worked and private investment. Based on the estimated rules, fiscal shocks are identified. According to the results, fiscal policy, in particular public consumption, investment, and transfers prevented a sharper and prolonged decline of German output at the beginning of the Great Recession, suggesting a timely response of fiscal policy. The overall effects, however, are small when compared to other domestic and international shocks that contributed to the economic downturn. Our overall findings are not sensitive to considering fiscal foresight.
16.06.2020 • 9/2020
The economy adapts to the pandemic
In the first half of 2020, the pandemic has exacted a heavy toll on the German economy, causing a slump in production that will not be fully recovered within the next year. According to IWH summer economic forecast, gross domestic product is expected to contract by 5.1% in 2020 and to increase by 3.2% in 2021. The decline in production in Eastern Germany is likely to be less pronounced compared to Germany as a whole and estimated at 3.2% in 2020.
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Was taugt das Corona-Konjunkturpaket? Lehren aus der Evaluierung der Konjunkturpolitik während der Finanzkrise
Wirtschaftliche Freiheit. Das ordnungspolitische Journal,
Die weltweite Ausbreitung des Coronavirus hat die wirtschaftliche Aktivität stark beeinträchtigt. Nachdem die erste ökonomische Welle über den chinesischen Außenhandel zu Beginn des Jahres 2020 erste Spuren in der Weltwirtschaft hinterlassen hatte, brachten Eindämmungsmaßnahmen auf der ganzen Welt die Wirtschaft in einigen Bereichen mehr oder weniger zum Stillstand. Gastronomie, Tourismus, Unterhaltungsbranche und große Teile des Einzelhandels fielen allgemeinen Kontakteinschränkungen zum Opfer, Erwerbstätige in nicht direkt eingeschränkten Wirtschaftsbereichen sind aufgrund der Schließung von Schulen und Kinderbetreuungseinrichtungen beeinträchtigt worden, und das Verarbeitende Gewerbe ist vor allem durch die Probleme in der Fahrzeugproduktion erheblich eingebrochen. Insgesamt ist die deutsche Wirtschaft durch einen kombinierten Angebots-Nachfrageschock in eine tiefe Rezession gestürzt.
Gauging the Effects of Fiscal Stimulus Packages in the Euro Area
Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control,
We seek to quantify the impact on euro area GDP of the European Economic Recovery Plan (EERP) enacted in response to the financial crisis of 2008–2009. To do so, we estimate an extended version of the ECB's New Area-Wide Model with a richly specified fiscal sector. The estimation results point to the existence of important complementarities between private and government consumption and, to a lesser extent, between private and public capital. We first examine the implied present-value multipliers for seven distinct fiscal instruments and show that the estimated complementarities result in fiscal multipliers larger than one for government consumption and investment. We highlight the importance of monetary accommodation for these findings. We then show that the EERP, if implemented as initially enacted, had a sizeable, although short-lived impact on euro area GDP. Since the EERP comprised both revenue and expenditure-based fiscal stimulus measures, the total multiplier is below unity.
Federal grants for local development to stop economic decline? – Lessons from Germany
Consequences of the International Crisis for European SMEs – Vulnerability and resilience. Routledge Studies in the European Economy, Routledge,
The chapter analyses theoretically and empirically the supply-side effects of the public investments funded by the German „Economic Stimulus Package II“(Konjunkturpaket II), which was implemented in 2009. In the theoretical part, we address the distortionary effects of investment grants on public capital provision and local economic development. According to the theoretical literature on the efficient provision of public goods, public inputs and economic growth, conditional investment grants have several negative allocation effects: First, they distort the relative factor prices for the local government stimulating excess public capital stocks and Pareto-inefficient provision of public goods. Second, long-term growth-enhancing effects of debt-financed public investment could only be expected for public inputs, which either directly increase the productivity of the private sector or increase factor productivity, especially by increasing the stock of human capital. In the empirical part, we find that despite of the recent increase in municipal investments in the German state of Saxony our regression results do not confirm a connection with the ESPII funds. Furthermore, no relationship between the municipal fiscal strength and the amount of ESPII grants received could be found. All in all, due to the focus of the grants on public consumption goods rather than public inputs only marginal future growth effects can be expected from the subsidized investments.
Langfristige Wirkungen des Konjunkturpakets II am Beispiel der sächsischen Kommunen
List Forum für Wirtschafts- und Finanzpolitik,
The article discusses primarily the potential long-term (supply-side) effects of the public investments subsidized by the German „Economic Stimulus Package II“. Considering the allocative aspects, especially the productivity and financing effects of publicly provided capital as well as the factor price effects of investment grants (municipalities are „lured to the concrete“) have to be taken into account. The theoretical problems are supported empirically by the subsidy practice in Saxony and its focus on local consumer goods (sports and leisure facilities) and on not directly economy-related educational facilities (kindergartens, primary schools). From a distributive point of view no interdependence between the financial strength (or weakness) of the municipalities and the amount of their ESPII-grants received could be confirmed empirically. Finally, with respect to the economic short-term stabilization effects of the program a significant increase of the municipal investments – although with a time lag - was found for Saxony.
What are the Long-Term Benefits of the Economic Stimulus Package II for German Local Governments? – The Case of Saxony
Wirtschaft im Wandel,
This article deals with the question whether the investments subsidized by the economic stimulus package II („Konjunkturpaket II“) do not only have short-term effects on demand but also long-term effects e.g. on local economic growth. As far as the short-term effects are concerned, the case of the German state of Saxony shows – with some delay – a rise in local government´s investments. Hence, the time-lag problem inherent in all governmental spending programmes seems to keep within reasonable limits. Up to now there have been no signs of inflationary price tendencies in the construction sector.
According to - for example - the „new“ economic growth theory, one ought to be sceptical about the long-term effects of the projects supported by the programme: Even for genuine public intermediate goods the withdrawal effects of financing have to be weighed against the positive effects on private enterprise sector productivity. Furthermore, the effects on factor prices caused by the investment grants might encourage the excess use of physical capital in public production.
This sceptical attitude of the theory is confirmed for Saxony by the fact that primarily public consumption goods (sports and leisure facilities) or educational facilities (kindergartens, primary schools), which are of no direct relevance to the local enterprises, are supported by the programme. Investments in vocational training, research and development play only a minor role at the local government level or are explicitly excluded from the programme.
Especially because of the incentives to misallocate public resources it is recommended to rely on unconditional grants in future support programmes. Then the local governments could use the grants for either „investments” in human capital (new [fixed-term contract] hires, qualification) or in physical capital, according to their needs.