Hugues Chevalier, Economist
For the last 12 months, the European economic growth has been slowing down mainly due to the decline of exports and to the geo political risks (trade war, Brexit). Germany has been the most affected country by this downturn because export weight within the GDP is high . Indeed, the other big European countries (France, Italy and Spain) depend more on their domestic demand (private consumption among others) rather than on their exports. Further to this, the domestic demand has been resilient in all countries thanks to a dynamic labour market. For the year ahead, the latest surveys suggest that the manufacturing sector should have reached its lowest point. With more public spending and an accommodating monetary policy, economic activity should recover slowly. But, the GDP growth would not exceed 1%.