Germany slashes growth outlook on Brexit trade fears

FRANKFURT — The German government has slashed its growth forecast sharply for this year, to 1.0 per cent from 1.8 per cent in last fall’s outlook, as fears about a chaotic Brexit and trade tensions hold back Europe’s largest economy.Economy Minister Peter Altmaier said Wednesday the German economy would grow for a 10th year in a row. But he said “the headwinds, primarily from the external environment, are increasing.”German businesses are unsettled about the possibility that Britain will leave the EU without agreeing on trade rules for a transition period. New import taxes imposed by the U.S. and China are also weighing on prospects for global trade. That hurts the outlook for Germany because the country is a major exporter.Germany’s economy grew 1.5 per cent last year and 2.2 per cent in 2017.The Associated Press

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