According to Ifo researcher Joachim Ragnitz, some German companies have recently increased prices more than necessary. "These companies have used the situation to increase their profits significantly," says the deputy head of the Ifo Dresden branch.
Sales prices there rose more sharply in the fourth quarter than was necessary due to the development of purchase prices.
Ragnitz sees such developments in particular in trade, hospitality and transport as well as in the construction industry. In almost all major sectors of the economy, gross operating surpluses have risen sharply, said the economist. As an antidote to exorbitant price increases, he relies primarily on more competition.
The Ifo researcher had already made a similar calculation at the end of last year. Fresh data from the fourth quarter now shows that the situation is continuing. From a consumer perspective, however, there is also good news: Overall, development slowed down in the fourth quarter, said the Ifo expert. There is hope for consumers "that inflation has peaked".