The environment for investment in machinery and equipment has improved
markedly in the course of the year. On the one hand, companies in Germany
are turning more upbeat about the (global) growth outlook and political
uncertainty in Europe is taking a back seat.
On the other hand, global growth
has gathered momentum of late, which provides a further stimulus to German
(export) business and has a positive spill-over effect on investment activity. In
view of the favourable growth outlook (which is also supported by leading
indicators such as ifo or PMI) and the sharp rise in manufacturing capacity
utilisation (currently at around 86.5%; by comparison 1995-2016 average: 84%),
we expect growth of investment in machinery and equipment to rise further.