Business has improved in March for German automakers and their suppliers. The ifo business situation indicator rose from minus 0.4 points in February to plus 7.9 points in March. This is a finding from the ifo Institute’s latest Business Survey. “Spring has arrived for carmakers,” says Klaus Wohlrabe, Head of Surveys at ifo. At the same time, managers are no longer as optimistic about the coming months as they were recently; the corresponding indicator fell to 19.1 points, down from 37.3 points in February.
in IFO, 06-04-2021
“However, automakers were able to continue filling their order books,” Wohlrabe adds. As to demand, the survey score rose from minus 1 point in February to plus 10.7 points in March. Order books grew only slightly, with the indicator reaching 14.8 points, up from 11.7 points in February.
Production is set to ramp up further. This indicator rose to 46.1 points, up from 35.7 points in February. Automakers expect their export business to see positive development; the relevant indicator reached 27 points in March.
The stock of finished goods remained larger than usual for the season; this indicator dropped to minus 10.3 points, down from minus 9.9 in February. Despite good business, companies are looking to employ fewer staff. Employment plans continue to provide for job losses.