ZEW Indicator of Economic Sentiment
Business Cycle | Cyclical indicator | Short-term forecast | Germany | Business survey | ZEW Indicator of Economic Sentiment
ZEW Indicator of Economic Sentiment for Germany, January 2017

The ZEW Indicator of Economic Sentiment for Germany has increased slightly in January 2017. The index has improved by 2.8 points compared to December, now standing at 16.6 points. "The slight increase of the ZEW Indicator of Economic Sentiment is mainly due the improved economic situation across European countries. The fairly good preliminary figures recorded for the development of the German GDP last year, as well as for the industrial production of the eurozone in November 2016, came as a surprise to many. This improvement in expectations can thus also be seen as a leap of faith for 2017," comments ZEW President Professor Achim Wambach.

China Economic Barometer
ZEW-PwC Indicator of Economic Sentiment China | China | Short-term forecast | Greater China | Business Cycle

At the start of 2017 executives at German companies in China are looking to the future with renewed optimism. Forecasts for the Chinese economy over the next twelve months have continued to improve slightly. The expected economic growth rate has jumped by 0.5 up to 1.6 points, much higher than the previous average of -5.1 points from when the survey began in the third quarter of 2013. These are the findings of the current ZEW-PwC China Economic Barometer, a survey carried out by the Mannheim-based Centre for European Economic Research (ZEW) together with the accounting and consulting firm PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC). 31 executives at German companies in China took part in the survey in December 2016.

Dates and News
ZEW | Verein für Socialpolitik (VfS)
Professor Achim Wambach, ZEW President and Chair of the VfS.

In January 2017, Achim Wambach, President of the Centre for European Economic Research (ZEW), took over as chair of the Verein für Socialpolitik (German Economic Association, VfS). Over the course of the next two years, Wambach will serve as chairman of the association, which represents around 4,000 economists from German-speaking countries. The VfS is one of the largest economic associations in Europe, with members from all over the world; most of them, however, are from Germany, Austria or Switzerland.

Research
ZEW Innovation Survey | Innovation Survey | Macroeconomic performance | Large firm | KMU
In 2015, German businesses invested more in innovation than ever before.

In 2015, German businesses increased their investments in innovation far more than previously planned. They invested a total of 157.4 billion euros in innovation – more than ever before. Compared to the previous year (2014: 145.0 billion euros) expenditure on innovation has increased by 8.8 per cent. These are the main findings of a current survey carried out by the Centre for European Economic Research (ZEW) in Mannheim on the innovation behaviour of German businesses on behalf on the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF). Since 1993 the survey has been carried out annually in collaboration with the infas Institute for Applied Social Sciences and the Fraunhofer Institute for Systems and Innovation Research (ISI).

Research
effective average tax burden | Tax competition | Corporate taxation | United States | U.S. presidential election
Donald Trump\'s plans to reform the US corporate tax system are less radical than previously expected.

Donald Trump's plans to reform the corporate tax system in the United States are less radical than previously expected. If the president-elect implements the tax reform plans he put forward during his 2016 presidential campaign, the effective tax burden for US businesses would merely fall to the average European level. This may not only prevent US businesses from engaging in aggressive tax evasion; Trump's tax reform might also have significant implications for global tax competition. These are the findings of a recent analysis by the Centre for European Economic Research (ZEW) in Mannheim.

Research
Price competition | Competition | Hotel industry | Online services
Best price clauses on Booking.com restrict hotels in their pricing decisions.

In December 2015, the Federal Cartel Office prohibited the online booking portal Booking.com from imposing its best price clause. Against this background, researchers from the Mannheim-based Centre for European Economic Research (ZEW) in collaboration with external researchers have investigated the impact of best price clauses on the use of different sales channels and on pricing decisions of hotels. The study has shown that in many cases, hotels do not comply with agreed best price clauses. Instead, they set a lower price on their direct channel than on large online travel agents where they also offer rooms. The study has also found evidence that this might be occurring more frequently since the prohibition of Booking.com’s best price clause came into effect. In addition, since the Federal Cartel Office prohibited Booking.com from using this clause, the researchers have observed an increase in hotel room offers via direct channels where prices tend to be lower. At the same time, there has been an increase in hotel room offers on Booking.com as well.

M&A Index
M&A | Takeover | Merger | ZEW-ZEPHYR M&A-Index | M&A activity
In 2016, the ZEW-ZEPHYR M&A Index recorded its highest ever value since recording began.

The outgoing year of 2016 has surpassed 2015 in terms of mega deals in mergers and acquisitions (M&As) worldwide. The ZEW-ZEPHYR M&A Volume-per-Deal Index has been climbing to ever greater heights, with the year 2016 surpassing the previous record high of 106 points in March 2016 a further four times and ultimately peaking at 113 points in October 2016 – by far the highest index value since records began. These are the findings of studies carried out by the Centre for European Economic Research (ZEW), Mannheim, on the basis of the Zephyr database of Bureau van Dijk.

Research
European Union | Export Sector | Export intermediaries | United States | Europe | U.S. presidential election
President-elect Donald Trump claimed \"Make America great again\" during his campaign in the USA in 2016.

The US economic policy changes pursued by the Trump administration will have rather small effects on EU Member States with regard to economic growth, consumption and investment. This is the result of a survey conducted by the Centre for European Economic Research (ZEW) among around 200 financial market experts as part of the Financial Market Survey in December 2016. An exception forms the export economy, where a clear majority of 59 per cent of respondents expects to see negative effects.

Research
Migration research | Migration policy | Delinquency | Voting behaviour | Germany | Refugees | Unemployment
Increased migration leads to higher unemployment rates among non-German workers in particular.

The effects of the large influx of refugees arriving in Germany have been the focus of intense political and social debate. A joint study by the Centre for European Economic Research (ZEW), Mannheim, and the University of Strathclyde has been investigating the short-term effects of this migration on unemployment, crimes rates and voting behaviour in Germany. The results of the study show that increased migration leads to higher unemployment rates among non-German workers in particular. Crime rates experienced only a negligible change. A larger influx of refugees or the existence of an immigrant reception centre in a particular region does not on their own lead to greater electoral success for anti-migration parties, such as the AfD ("Alternative for Germany"), in comparison with other regions with no large influxes of migrants or reception centres.

Comment
ECB | Interest rate policy | Interest Rate | Federal Reserve Bank

The US Federal Reserve raised its key interest rate by 0.25 per cent, to a range of 0.5 to 0.75 per cent. Professor Friedrich Heinemann, head of the "Corporate Taxation and Public Finance" Research Department at the Centre for European Economic Research (ZEW) in Mannheim, comments on the decision.

Contact

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