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Why has Germany gone into recession?

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Germany fell into recession in the first quarter of 2023, putting Europe's largest economy out of step with the rest of the continent.The seasonally adjusted figures from the national statistics institute, Destatis, meet the technical definition of a recession: two consecutive quarters of economic contraction.

This puts Germany in recession for the first time since the decline in GDP in the first and second quarters of 2020, when the Covid-19 pandemic began to bite.With German consumers and businesses battered by high inflation and rising interest rates, the country's Gross Domestic Product (GDP) fell by 0.3% between January and March – following a 0.5% decline between October and December last year.So why is this happening?The downturn is due in particular to the fall in domestic consumption as a result of inflation.

People are simply belt-tightening, with skyrocketing prices meaning there is less cash to splash. Inflation remains very high at more than 7.2% in April, despite a gradual decline.Top of the list of factors fuelling price rises is the war in Ukraine.

German industry, long dependent on cheap Russian gas, was hit hard last year after Moscow launched its ill-fated invasion in February 2022.

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