This is the third edition of Coface’s survey on payment experience in Germany, done this summer, with 442 participating companies located in Germany. Our survey highlights that Germany is in a changing phase. The pressure on companies due to international competition is getting stronger. This is one of the reasons why German companies have increased their average credit period from 29.8 days to 35.9 days between 2017 and 2019.
Since the start of 2019, the signals warning of a slowdown in world growth have multiplied. While all economists agree on this downward trend, following the cyclical peak reached in 2017, there is now a question mark as to the scale of this slowdown, especially in the eurozone. While some commentators are suggesting the likelihood of a recession in 2020, most economists are predicting “only” a slight downturn.
The agri-food sector (alongside the ICT sector), has been at the heart of the global trade war, aggravated by the fact that China’s retaliation measures have often targeted US soybean imports. As a consequence, the US agri-food sector, notably American soybean exporters are negatively impacted by this situation.
As usual, many political events marked the summer: another episode of the Argentine exchange rate crisis, an unexpected change of government in Italy, major demonstrations in Hong Kong and Russia, an ever more challenging continuation of the “Brexit” process and an attack on oil installations in Saudi Arabia.