Ladd (1988) investigates configurations A[BC] vs. [AB]C of three English clauses containing clause-internal downstep. A sister-node relation between clauses (but not a sequential relation) leads to downstep among clauses, such that C is systematically lower than B in A[BC] but not in [AB]C. These findings are replicated here with German data. In addition, the German phenomenon of upstep (Truckenbrodt 2007b) arguably targets the phonetic reference line that models lowering among clauses (van den Berg et al. 1992). We show that both Ladd's and our results also support Selkirk's (2011) suggestion that root sentences/illocutionary clauses can be interpreted as matched to intonational phrases (not just aligned with them, as in Downing 1970). The results also suggest that, in addition to downstep among intonational phrases, phrase-final lowering takes place.