Up until three weeks ago, it was all "wunderbar" in the German economy. The Finance Ministry forecast 1.8 percent growth in 2015, despite the headwinds from a slowdown in China and emerging markets. German finance ministry officials even told me last month they were surprised how resilient the economy was in the face of these challenges.
The feel-good factor also came from the humanitarian front.The country's international standing received admiration due to Angela Merkel's openness to migrants fleeing war-torn countries including Syria.
And then came that Friday that few in Germany would like to forget. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency made public its claim that the German corporate prodigy Volkswagen had manipulated its diesel emissions software. We now know this affected 11 million cars worldwide. Heads rolled and the share price plummeted.
Germany is reeling from that crisis. It has shaken its corporate and political elite to the core. Is "Made in Germany" no longer a trademark to rely on?