COVID-19 is still here but many European countries are getting ready to test post-lockdown life.
Italian factories and building sites reopen from Monday after Europe’s longest lockdown. So do German schools, museums and churches, following the reopening of small shops, while Britain will lay out its exit strategy in coming days.
Slowly does it, seems to be the message from governments wary of a renewed spike in infections. But with the ECB predicting the euro area economy to shrink by as much as 15% this quarter, authorities are also keen to get activity going again.
They’ll watch April trade and industrial output data in coming days for clues on how Q2 might shape up. And finally, Italy faces a review from Moody’s on Friday – at a notch above junk, the rating is very likely safe, but an unexpected downgrade from Fitch has jangled some nerves.