Sophie Wilkinson | Contributing Editor | Monday, 25 September 2017

Germany has seen a far-right surge into the Bundestag

Your European Holiday Just Got A Bit Cheaper, But It’s Not Great News

The Debrief: Germany has seen a far-right surge into the Bundestag…

Wilkommen zu Germany! Hallo und bonjour und hi to anyone looking for a cheap trip to Berlin, Munich, Leipzig, Dusseldorf, or even, um, Paris, or Lyon, or Lisbon or Rome or Bari or Sicily or…anywhere within the Eurozone, really.

The good news is, your money is going to go much further this week, because the Euro is now 1.14 pounds sterling, having crept up by 0.5% after the German election results showed a slight weakness to Chancellor Angela Merkel.

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The German leader was re-elected for the fourth time, with her conservative party gaining 33% of the vote, their lowest result since 1949, reports The Times. Merkel now faces some trouble, because 5 million voters sided with an anti-migrant party, the Alternative for Germany (AfD). The far-right party got 13% of the votes, coming third and gaining 90 seats in parliament. 

The AfD also came second highest in the polls of the former East Germany, where it seems people are very keen on a party so vehemently opposed to Merkel's mostly financially-driven decisions to allow up to 1 million refugees into the country. Borrowing the neggy and hateful rhetoric from the US election, AfD figures used their campaigns to say they want to ‘lock her up’, and ‘take our country back’. Nicht so gut...

The momentary plus-side of the surge of the far-right (who haven’t been represented in German parliament since 1961) is that the Euro has weakened.

Since Brexit, the price of a weekly shop has over in the UK has risen. But the story goes back further than that. On July 25th 2007, a bratwurst costing €3 would only set you back about £2. Following the financial crash of 2009, the same bratwurst (maybe a bit stale by now) would cost you £2.94. Over time, the price dropped, and on the eve of Brexit, the exact same bratwurst would have cost £2.30, but the next day, it shot up to £2.55!

Last week, the bratwurst cost £2.65, and today, it is just £2.63.

That 2p saving on a sausage might seem like A Good Thing, and following news that the UK government will be taking a slow and steady-ish approach to Brexit, the pound has strengthened. It looks more likely than before that the UK will stay in the Single Market and that positivity is impacting on our currency. 

And, because the initial tax-cut inspired boom of the dollar has waned thanks to, well, Donald J Trump’s presidency, the pound isn’t doing too badly against the dollar. A $3 hotdog in the ol’ US of A cost £2.46 in the days ahead of Trump’s inauguration in January this year, and now costs just £2.22!

However, there's still a sour taste in the mouth - the rise of far-right influenced nationalism has led to not one, not two, but three currencies falling in worth in the past 18 months…

You might also be interested in:

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Should We Worry About Europe's Swing To The Right?

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Tags: Politics, Pure Politics