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Global Growth likely to slow down further; inflation & employment worries plague policy makers

FXStreet (Mumbai) - The IMF’s lowered its global growth forecast for 2015 to 3.1 per cent from the previous from 3.3 per cent. According to the IMF, slowdown in emerging markets driven by weak commodity prices formed the basis for its downward revision. The Washington-based group also cut its 2016 forecast to 3.6 per cent from 3.8 per cent. This growth rate is the lowest since the global financial crisis and recession of 2009.

According to nearly 300 economists polled by Reuters around the world, a prolonged period of disinflation will continue to impact the global economy. Experts are of the opinion that the global economic slowdown might extend well into 2016.

Disinflation a concern

Despite ultra-easy monetary policy from most major central the economic indicators have failed to look promising. The United States, the euro zone, Britain, Japan are increasingly exposed to slowing global demand and are finding it extremely difficult to maintain their growth momentum. Forecasts have been revised downward time and again by economists. Inflation outlook have been chopped proving that aggressive monetary policy could do little to boost inflation across countries. Inflation figures in the U.S., the euro zone, Britain and Japan are way lower than their 2 per cent target.
On one hand the major G10 economies struggle with disinflation while some of the leading emerging nations like India, Brazil struggle with high inflation rates.

Policy makers struggle to raise employment

Also adding to disinflation is the pressure to raise employment figures. The euro zone, for example has the euro zone has a very difficult task ahead - chronically-high unemployment and extension of its asset purchase program is not likely to solve the problem. The U.S. however have been reporting steady growth in the labour market with the October jobs data pointing towards a 7-1/2-year low in unemployment rate. Scandinavian countries are also expected to perform well in this respect.

Emerging Markets led by China shows signs of continued slowdown

The real worry with respect to ‘slowing down of economy’ concentrates in the emerging markets, which have contributed well towards the global growth in the recent years. GDP growth forecasts have been revised downward for many of the emerging countries.

To begin with China's economy is facing headwinds from both cooling exports and dip in investment. Chinese growth dipped to 6.9 per cent in the third quarter, dropping below the 7 per cent mark for the first time since the global financial crisis. The present scenario makes it necessary for the PBOC to further ease monetary policy. The central bank cut interest rates in late October for the sixth time in less than a year. It also guided the yuan to move weakly against the dollar.

There is little hope from other emerging nations as well. South Africa will continue to be troubled by weak growth but persistent inflation while some of the big latin American nations looks like it will continue to be hit by commodity price fluctuations.

Latin America Economy hit by dip in commodity price

One of the major Latin American countries moved deep into recession as the central bank raised rates aggressively to tackle inflation. Sharp drop in oil price has taken a heavy toll on economic growth in the region. According to an estimate elaborated by FocusEconomics, Latin America’s GDP growth tumbled from 1.0% in Q4 2014 to 0.6% in Q1 2015. Recent data highlighted that the region’s economy increased only by a lowly 0.1% in the second quarter. Apart from causing exports to suffer, the fall in commodity prices also led to a dampening of investment and a steady outflow of capital.

International trade is suffering

International trade has taken a significant hit this year. The latest Chinese trade data states exports fell 6.9 per cent from a year ago, dropping for a fourth month while Imports slipped too, sliding to a lowly 18.8 per cent According to Nils Smedegaard Andersen, chief executive officer at A.P. Moeller-Maersk, “Trade is currently significantly weaker than it normally would be under the growth forecasts we see.”

IMF suggests boosting demand to propel growth

The IMF is of the opinion that countries should also keep building scopes for demand particularly with higher infrastructure investment. This according to the fund will foster short-term growth and longer term efficiency.

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