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Nowcasting European Economic Activity Post COVID

18 September 2020
Прогноз экономической активности стран Европы после пандемии COVID-19
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A study prepared by analysts of City financial company summarizes estimates of manufacturing recovery in certain European countries (France, Italy, Spain, Germany, the United Kingdom, the Netherlands, Sweden and Poland). Environment pollution index, such as NO2 concentration level, is taken as the key indicator to estimate recovery rate in production capacity. Moreover, the study includes aggregate poll results reflecting business community expectations for manufacturing recovery in the EU countries.

The Roscongress Foundation presents the salient points of the publication accompanied by fragments of broadcasts of relevant panel discussions from the business programme of international events held by the Roscongress Foundation.

In the current situation demanding efficient monitoring, an environment pollution index (nitrogen dioxide (NO2) concentration level) is one of the most useful indicators to estimate manufacturing performance in the European countries.

In a view of the pandemic containment measures, industrial production has shown a drastic reduction. Which trend manufacturing sector recovery will show in the immediate future, is crucial. Production volume and industrial output are helpful indicators to evaluate recovery rate, however, they may be outdated due to a two-month delay in publication.


European countries can be characterized by different manufacturing recovery rates: the Netherlands and Spain are recovering relatively faster, while Italy and the United Kingdom demonstrate a slower recovery rate.

European countries, such as France and Germany, show the most drastic change in manufacturing performance. Thus, France tends to a drastic forecasted manufacturing recovery after substantial decrease in March and April 2020. Next to that, despite positive expert estimates, pre-crisis production level can still not be reached: on a year-over-year basis, manufacturing performance is expected to decrease by 10-15% in June 2020.

According to expert estimates, the countries that suffered most from the COVID-19 pandemic, are likely to recover at a slower rate.

Several European countries show a slightly more positive and steady recovery. In the first place, such countries are the Netherlands and Spain. However, the trend in the Netherlands can be explained by a smaller number of COVID-19 cases, and in Spain such trend is characterized by the experts as contradictory, despite far greater losses


Expectations of the European business community concerning manufacturing recovery confirmed by polls as agreed by the European Commission, are mostly positive.

National expectations poll agreed by the European Commission and aggregated at the EU level, is generally a reliable information source that reflects business environment in the region. But at the same time, actual extraordinary economic situation provides for certain risks in terms of appropriate forecasting aptitude in the current crisis situation. Despite disruptions in supply chains and general uncertainty in the situation over the next two months, the polls show that the business community is certain in potential V-shaped recovery.


For more information about construction as a sector with a sizeable share in many economies, rising level of digitalization, and shifts in consumer sentiment in real estate, please see the COVID-19, StayHomeEconomy, SMEs and Entrepreneurship.

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