German wise man eyes lower GDP, ECB rates

GERMANY - Bert Ruerup, one of the German government's five economic advisers or "wise men", cut his forecast on 23 August for German growth in 2001 and said the way was clear for the European Central Bank to cut interest rates.

"We are in a period of stagnation. Economic growth in Germany at the end of this year will be barely more than one percent," Ruerup said.

The interview was conducted after data showing Germany's economy did not grow at all in the second quarter of this year.

Ruerup has

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