In November 2023, the seasonally and calendar-adjusted business climate in the German print and media industry was slightly more positive following the previous month’s loss. While the business outlook for the next six months continued to rise, assessments of the current business situation fell. The business climate index calculated by the German Printing and Media Industries Federation gained 0.4 per cent compared to the previous month, adjusted for seasonal and calendar effects. At 87.0 points, the index in November was around 2.1 per cent below the previous year’s level and roughly equalled the value from August of this year.
In November 2023, the decision-makers at printing and media companies surveyed by the IFO Institute again assessed their current business situation as worse than in the previous month. In contrast, they were slightly less pessimistic about developments in the coming months. Expectations regarding business development over the next 6 months increased. In November, the improvement in business prospects prevailed and the business climate therefore rose slightly compared to the previous month. The characteristics of the current and expected business situation determine the development of the business climate, which is a good leading indicator for production development in the print and media industry.
The seasonally and calendar-adjusted business situation index recorded a weaker decline in November than in the previous month and, at 81.0 points, was around 1.3 per cent below the October value. However, at around 13.8 per cent, the index was significantly below the previous year’s level, confirming the production trend in the printing industry forecast by the bvdm. Although assessments of the business situation in the fourth quarter were slightly better due to the seasonal Christmas business, only around 9 per cent of respondents rated their current business situation as positive. 61 per cent assessed their current business situation as neutral, while 30 per cent gave a negative assessment. At -21 percentage points in November, the balance was around 27 percentage points lower than in the same month last year. According to the companies’ assessment, the order situation for domestic and foreign orders did not provide any positive impetus for growth in November either. Both balances were clearly negative at around -57 and -73 percentage points respectively.
Seasonally adjusted business expectations were once again less pessimistic than in the previous month; at 93.4 points, the corresponding index was around 2.2 per cent above the previous month’s level. However, only a few companies (7 per cent) still stated that they expected their business situation to improve significantly over the next six months. Around 43 per cent of respondents expected their business situation to deteriorate over the next 6 months. This expectation is also reflected in expectations regarding future employment trends. With a balance of -24 percentage points, this fell to the second-lowest level of the year. This corresponds to around 22 percentage points less than in the same month last year.
The Bundesverband Druck und Medien e. V. (bvdm) is the umbrella organisation of the German printing industry. As an employers’ organisation, political business association and technical trade association, it represents the positions and objectives of the printing industry vis-à-vis politicians, administration, trade unions and the supplier industry. The bvdm is supported by eight regional associations. Internationally, it is organised through its membership of Intergraf and FESPA. The printing industry currently comprises around 6,900 predominantly small and medium-sized companies with more than 110,000 employees subject to social security contributions.