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Latest Reports

  • July 27, 2016

    Brexit casts long shadow on the global economy

    While most stock markets and currencies have recovered from the post-Brexit turmoil, multiple uncertainties are still casting a long shadow on the global economy. In the aftermath of the vote, FocusEconomics panelists cut the economic outlook for some countries in order to reflect both the short-term consequences of the vote and ultimately the UK’s expected exit. While revisions to many 2016 forecasts were small as they mostly reflected the turbulence associated with the referendum, adjustments to the 2017 projections are gradually becoming more pronounced.

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  • July 13, 2016

    Economy remains in muddy waters and Brexit exacerbates volatility

    Latin America's economic downturn that began in the second half of 2015 persisted in the first half of this year. A regional GDP aggregate elaborated by FocusEconomics estimates that the economy contracted 1.2% year-on-year in Q1, while recent activity data suggest that growth continued to falter in the second quarter. This dismal performance has exposed the region's persistent structural weakness of commodity dependence and the lack of clear policies to promote further economic diversification and encourage productivity gains.

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  • July 13, 2016

    Regional economic growth decelerates in Q1

    The economy of the Central American and the Caribbean region decelerated to the slowest pace of expansion in three years in Q1. While the economy performed robustly last year, mainly supported by strong private consumption and an improvement in the region’s trade and tourism sectors, recent data show that the region’s economy lost some ground in the first quarter. GDP expanded 2.7% over the same quarter of the previous year, which marked a deceleration over the 3.0% increase tallied in the final quarter of 2015.   

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  • July 19, 2016

    Brexit & ASEAN | Region faces growing external headwinds

    The surprising result of United Kingdom’s referendum on 23 June sent shockwaves across the globe, rattling financial markets and casting a shadow on the outlook for the global economy. Reverberations from the historic vote were felt in the economies in the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) as a knee jerk reaction by financial markets caused stock markets to plummet and investors to flock into risk-averse assets. While it is difficult to anticipate the full effects that Brexit will have on the ASEAN region—the outcome of negotiations between the EU and the UK are critical—waves of contagion from Brexit decision are expected to hit the region through trade, financial and investment channels. In addition, an increase in external headwinds to the region’s growth outlook will increase pressure on policy makers to mitigate the adverse effects and could pave the way for additional fiscal or monetary stimulus. Malaysia’s Central Bank was the first in the region to react following the Brexit vote when it delivered a surprise cut to the policy rate on 13 July.

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  • July 19, 2016

    Brexit & ESA | Region faces turbulent times exacerbated by Brexit

    The United Kingdom’s staggering decision to leave the Euro area heightened volatility in the financial markets in the aftermath of the 23 June referendum and casted a long shadow on the global economy. Most of the currencies in the region weakened strongly in the days following the vote as investors fled to safe haven assets such as the Japanese yen, gold or U.S. dollar-denominated holdings. Equity markets followed suit and recorded sizeable loses. That said, all principal stock-exchange markets in the region recovered quickly from the plunge in the next few days. While the most of the currencies in the region followed the same pattern and strengthened in July, the Chinese yuan was the main exception as authorities seems to be weakening the currency in an attempt to shore up growth.

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  • July 27, 2016

    Regional slowdown expected in the wake of Brexit

    Outside of the UK, the economic damage from the United Kingdom’s vote to leave the EU is expected to be most profound in the Eurozone. In the aftermath of the decision, FocusEconomics panelists have significantly altered their forecasts for the Eurozone economy and many of its constituent countries. Prior to the vote, our panel had considered the region’s recovery to be firmly on track as steady domestic demand had fueled growth in the first quarter of the year and the bloc had showed resilience to external headwinds. Our panelists had projected that economic activity would pick up steam in 2017 and they saw GDP growth remaining broadly steady over the long-term horizon. Now, the Eurozone economy is expected to slow down in 2017 as contagion from Brexit hits the region, and the long-term growth outlook has soured. Our panel sees GDP expanding 1.5% in 2016, which is unchanged from our pre-Brexit forecast, due to a strong first quarter GDP reading and the long timeline for Brexit. Yet in 2017, as the economic consequences take effect, our panel sees growth edging down to 1.4%, which is 0.2 percentage points lower than the pre-Brexit Consensus Forecast.

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  • July 5, 2016

    CEE economy loses steam in Q1, risks to growth intensify in wake of Brexit

    The economies of Central and Eastern Europe (CEE) lost steam at the start of 2016, growing at the slowest pace since Q4 2014. Regional GDP growth slid from Q4 2015’s 3.7% to 2.9% in Q1 over the same quarter of last year. The reading was driven by a sharp slowdown in EU development funds as well as unfavorable external conditions. Looking at the individual countries in the region, growth slowed almost across the board with the exceptions of Croatia, Estonia, Lithuania and Romania. Some of the sharpest slowdowns were recorded among the region’s major economies: Hungary and Poland both grew at multi-year lows. Following the soft start to the year, the region is likely to have regained some steam in the second quarter and high-frequency data point to a better performance. The FocusEconomics panel foresees the economy having grown 3.1% annually in Q2.

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  • July 5, 2016

    Domestic challenges and external risks will weigh on growth this year

    Growth momentum lost steam in the first quarter of the year in South-Eastern Europe (SEE) amid domestic and external headwinds. The region expanded 3.5% annually in Q1, which was below Q4’s nearly-five-year high growth rate of 3.9%. Among the largest economies in the region, growth dynamics weakened slightly in Q1 in Turkey on the back of a deteriorating external sector and rising political uncertainty, which had a negative impact on investment. Moreover, the economic contraction worsened in Greece due to a broad-based deterioration, suggesting that the country is far from a quick turnaround from the crisis. On the upside, dynamics improved in Croatia, Romania and Serbia in Q1.

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  • July 5, 2016

    Region’s economy remains feeble in Q1 

    Worsening economic conditions in Russia and lower oil prices hit the economies of the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS) in 2015 and more complete data have confirmed that weakness across the region continued at the outset of this year. An aggregate GDP growth estimate elaborated by FocusEconomics shows that, following the 3.0% year-on-year contraction in Q4 2015, the CIS economy decreased 1.1% in Q1. However, the Commonwealth’s economic downturn in Q1 was not as pronounced as expected as Russia—the region’s largest economy—was more resilient to heightened volatility in global financial markets and the renewed fall in oil prices, which touched lows of under USD 30 per barrel in January. Russia’s GDP contracted 1.2% year-on-year in Q1, which came in above the 3.8% decrease observed in Q4 and was better than the 1.4% contraction that Russia’s Ministry of Economic Development had expected. Nevertheless, the contraction in the region’s largest economy undeniably affected other CIS countries’ economic activity: economies such as Azerbaijan, Belarus, Kazakhstan and Kyrgyzstan contracted at the beginning of the year.

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  • July 6, 2016

    Growth remains subdued amid geopolitical tensions and global uncertainly

    Growth remained weak in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) at the outset of the year as geopolitical risks and weak global growth continue to hamper economic activity across the region. GDP expanded 2.0% annually in Q1 according to preliminary data for the region. The print was in line with the result tallied in Q4 and thus growth remained at levels last seen in height of the financial crisis in 2009. Taking a closer look at the region’s economies individually, the downward spiral among oil-driven economies seems to have come to an end after a rebound in prices followed a renewed plunge in oil prices, which fell to a multiyear-low in January. However, sharp consolidation processes in an attempt to rein in rampant fiscal deficits are hampering economic growth among oil-rich nations. On the other hand, rising global uncertainty, widespread security risks and mounting domestic challenges are hurting economic activity among oil-dependent economies.

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  • July 19, 2016

    Brexit & SSA | Economic effects will be felt in the region

    The decision of the United Kingdom to leave the European Union represents a big political and economic shock for the UK with spillover effects spread across the European Union and in the rest of the world. The Sub-Saharan Africa (SSA) region is expected to feel the consequences of Brexit, although the economic effects in the region will be contained. SSA is exposed to the UK through trade and investment, which will be the main channels affected by Brexit in the region. The outcome of the referendum has caused high volatility in global financial markets and the uncertainty regarding the consequences of the unprecedented vote will continue to be present in the short to medium term, at least until new agreements between the UK and the EU are approved.

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