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World Bank warns of 'darkening skies' for global economy

January 9, 2019 10:37 am
The predicted slowdown is focused on rich countries, particularly the US [Source: Bill Clark]

The World Bank is warning of increasing risks, or what it calls “darkening skies”, for the world economy.

In its annual assessment of global prospects the Bank predicts continued, though somewhat slower, growth this year and next.

The Bank’s forecast for the global economy is expansion this year of 2.9% and 2.8% in 2020.

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But overhanging the broadly favourable outlook, are rising concerns that could mean economic performance falls short.

There is certainly some good news in this report. While the global economy is slowing down, it’s likely to be what the Bank’s economists call a “soft landing”.

The slowdown started in the middle of last year and it has so far been “orderly”.

The predicted slowdown is focussed on the rich countries, particularly the US, although it will continue to expand more rapidly than either the Eurozone or Japan according to the Bank’s forecasts.

The US slowdown is the result of the fading impact of President Trump’s tax cuts and by 2021 its growth will have almost split – to 1.6% compared with 2.9% last year.

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