Germany sliding into ‘dangerous’ anti-Europe hysteria warns top economist


Isobel Schnable – worried about anti EU mood in Germany

As Germany’s economy continues to stutter one of the country’s top economists has warned the country is desending into “anti-Europe hysteria” amid growing criticism in the country of the European Central Bank (ECB) and surging support for the Eurosceptic, anti – immigration AfD Party.

Marcel Fratzscher said the entire European Union would be damaged by the backlash against the ECB’s austerity policies and the cost to Germany of propping up the single currency. Mr Fratscher is chief of the German Institute for Economic Research in Berlin and has also been an executive of the Eurozone’s central bank. He told UK financial newspaper The Financial Times: “Germany is sliding into a dangerous anti-Europe, anti-ECB mood, which threatens to damage the ECB’s credibility, the Euro an ultimately all of Europe.”

The warning comes less than two weeks after Chancellor Merkel’s ruling coalition suuffered heavy defeats intwo regional elections and Germany’s newly appointed ECB board member Isabel Schnabel called on her fellow economists to tone down their scathing analysis of the ECB’s performance. Ms Schnabel, an economics professor at the University of Bonn, predicted a crisis for the Euro if Germans did not take a step back to reflect on their country’s direction. Unfortunately for EU fans in Germany, voters have had years to reflect on the direction in which Merkel is leading the country and have decided they do not like it.

In an attempt to appeal to other German economists Schnable tweeted: “Dear fellow German economists, if you are wondering what you can do for Europe: Please help to dispel the harmful & wrong narratives about the ECB’s monetary policy, floating around in political and media circles. These threaten the euro more than many other things.”

This is rather spurious as nobody takes any notice of economists because they are always wrong. And the voters are in no mood to listen.

Unfortunately, the majority of Germans are opposed to further political and economic integration of EU member states, the country is politically polarised and with left and right more opposed to the idea of working with each other to bring down the government than they are to allowing Merkel’s centrist coalition to blunder on with the country politically paralyzed, it seems things can only get worse. In another blow to The Chancellor, her main coalition partner, the Social Democrats (SDP) this week lurched to the left by electing a far left candidate as its leader.

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