Last month we attended the Baader Investment Conference in Munich, Germany. This is the second time we have attended this conference as it is an efficient way for us to catch-up with many of our investee companies in Germany. The conference this year brought together 130 listed companies from Germany and Austria representing a good cross section of the German and broader European economy. While the weakness in China and other emerging markets was well flagged, it was the strong commentary around Europe that got our attention. Attendees were clear that Europe has turned the corner and is improving. The vast majority of companies still derive a significant portion of their revenues from Europe. Accordingly, actual growth in their home market looks set to exceed current expectations, which could more than offset any weakness from China/emerging markets. Many spoke of improvements in the southern economies like Italy and Spain and in eastern Europe generally, and in the consumer, industrial and construction sectors more specifically. Even France was reported by many as having turned the corner. (VIEW LINK)
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