Whatnextfortheeurozone?

Still,whiletheeurozonehashithertoprovedrelativelyresilient,it’sstillfartoosoontoassumealimitedknock-oneffectfromUSweakness,asCapitalEconomicspointedout。

InthefourthquarterGermanconsumptionfellunexpectedlysharply,highlighting“aweakspotinEurope’slargesteconomy”,asRalphAtkinssaidintheFT。

ThisdealsablowtohopesthatconsumptioncanoffsetlowerinvestmentandexportsthisyearandthustempertheimpactofaUSslowdown–althoughontheplussideretailers’confidenceimprovedinthelatestIfosurvey。

Meanwhile,confidenceaboutexportprospectsdeclined,suggestingtheimpactofthestrongeuroisbeingfelt。

“TheGermaneconomyisdefinitelysailinginchoppywaters,”saidAlexanderKochatUnicredit。

Meanwhile,don’tcountonthetradedecouplingthesisapplyingtoEurope,saidMichaelSesitonBloomberg。

com。

Americaaccountsforjust12%ofEUexternalexports,butthat’snot“thefullstory”。

NotethatsalesofUSaffiliatesofGermanfirmstotalled$352bnin2005,fourtimesthevalueofGermanexports。

DutchUSaffiliatesaleswere16timesexports。

IftheUSheadssouth,“sotoowilltheearningsofmanyEuropeanfirms”。

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