Maven: “Error installing metadata”

Today I had a problem compiling and installing a simple maven project.
Every time I ran “mvn install” I received the following error:

Error installing artifact's metadata: Error installing metadata:
Error updating group repository metadata
input contained no data

The problem here was an empty maven-metadata-local.xml in my local repository of the artifact I wanted to install. After completely removing this artifact from my repository an install was possible.