FocusEconomics Insights - Latest Posts
May 26, 2017
Vienna, Austria is home to some of the most picturesque buildings and monuments in Europe, but there is one very important building in the city center that you would be forgiven for missing. That's the OPEC headquarters. Although perhaps not the greatest tourist attraction in Vienna, the headquarters building gives off an aura of organization and unity. However, one could argue that the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries is anything but.
May 25, 2017
We are pleased to announce the winners of our 2017 Analyst Forecast Awards. The Awards recognize the most accurate forecasters for the main macroeconomic indicators across 87 countries and 29 commodity prices in 2016. Details of the awards and the list of winners are available at: www.focus-economics.com/awards.
To identify the top economic forecasters, FocusEconomics assessed the accuracy of the forecasts submitted by over 350 institutions to its Consensus Forecast survey over the course of 24 months. Among the winning institutions are the world’s most renowned international banks and economic research firms such as BMI Research, Capital Economics, Citigroup Global Markets, Deutsche Bank, EIU, HSBC, JPMorgan and Oxford Economics, along with many others.
May 22, 2017
Urban unemployment rose at the fastest rate in over 20 years last year
The deepening economic crisis in Latin America was evident last year, which marked the second consecutive year of contraction in the labor market with the urban unemployment rate rising from 7.3% in 2015 to 8.9%. This is the largest annual increase in more than two decades, influenced in particular by the deterioration of the Brazilian labor market, according to the report Coyuntura Laboral en América Latina y el Caribe from the Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC) and the International Labor Organization (ILO). However, despite the poor data, levels of unemployment are still lower than in the late 1990s and early 2000s.
May 18, 2017
As reviewed by Dr. Caroline Gray, Senior Economics Editor at FocusEconomics
To ease or not to ease? When the European Central Bank took the decision to embark on a massive quantitative easing program in early 2015, it seemed to have little other option. With heavily indebted governments across Western Europe coming under fire from their citizens suffering the brutal effects of austerity measures, politicians were practically begging for some room for maneuver. And with interest rates already pretty much as low as they could go, the ECB’s only way of responding to the clamor was to start injecting liquidity into the economy, buying up government debt and thereby lowering bond yields and alleviating some of the pressure on governments.
May 16, 2017
After years of booming economic growth, it was thought by some up until recently that China was not subject to the normal rules of economic and financial gravity and that the country's growth would go on forever. However, after the financial crisis many came to realize that China's economic growth was heavily reliant on government debt-fueled investment and if that trend continued a serious 1990s Japan-esque economic collapse could be on the cards. Chinese authorities decided that growth needed to slow down and a lower "new normal" for growth has been targeted. And so it has begun in recent years. China's economic growth has steadily come back down to earth, as Chinese authorities have begun an economc rebalancing toward a more sustainable consumption-based economy.
We sat down with our Head of Economic Research and China Senior Economist Ricard Torné so he could give us an update on China's economic rebalancing and outlook for the 2017 and beyond.
May 12, 2017
Without higher productivity, Latin America’s economic vitality will be vulnerable to three potentially very disruptive threats.
Over the past 15 years, Latin American economies have grown faster than many developed regions, yet they have lagged behind other regions in the developing world. Average growth over this period in Latin America was 3%, almost 80% of this was due to population growth and not to productivity. According to the McKinsey Global Institute (MGI), between 2000 and 2015 productivity in Latin America grew by just 0.6%, one of the lowest in the world. MGI also points out that without greater productivity, there are three threats to the region’s economic momentum that combined have the potential to be very disruptive.
May 9, 2017
Assessing shifts in the giant current account surpluses of Germany, China and Japan
Decades of conflicting perspectives over the causes and effects of global trade imbalances have been thrust back into the spotlight in recent months by Donald Trump’s brazen criticism of almost every country with a significant current account surplus with the U.S. His controversial accusation that big exporter countries are deliberately weakening their currencies to gain a competitive advantage taps into an issue that has perplexed and divided economists and policymakers ever since the mid-1990s. At that time, countries such as the U.S. were starting to build up large current account deficits, while others such as China, Germany and Japan were accumulating large surpluses.
May 8, 2017
The commodity super cycle is well and truly over, as has been exemplified by the tumble in commodity prices over the last few years. Emerging market economies that depend heavily on commodities exports for economic growth have been floundering as a result. However, Commodities prices are on their way back with underlying fundamentals of the commodity markets remaining positive through Q1 and are expected to continue to support the recovery throughout this year. But will the comeback in commodities prices impact the emerging market economies' economic growth? In this post we take a look at some of the commodities that are making a comeback and the outlook their biggest exporters.
April 25, 2017
Recent changes within Mercosur and the Trump's victory in the U.S. have created a situation that would have been unimaginable just a few months ago
"Rarely in history do scenarios align as they are aligned today," Mexico's Economy Minister, Ildefonso Guajardo, said when speaking about the first meeting of Mercosur and the Pacific Alliance countries’ foreign ministers.
April 20, 2017
Productivity is considered by some to be the most important area of economics and yet one of the least understood. Its simplest definition is output per hour worked, however, productivity in the real world is not that simple. Productivity is a major factor in an economy’s ability to grow and therefore is the greatest determinant of the standard of living for a given person or group of people. It is the reason why a worker today makes much more than a century ago, because each hour of work produces more output of goods and services.
According to Ian Stewart, Deloitte’s Chief Economist, “It is hard to overstate the importance of productivity in driving improvements in living standards. Since 1850, UK GDP per head has risen 20-fold, transforming our standards of living. If productivity had remained flat over that period, GDP per head would only have doubled.”
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2018 inflation forecast for Central America revised down 0.1 percentage points this month to 3.4%. https://t.co/vCeYnGSmsE
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Political noise and economic imbalances threaten Latin America's economic outlook. Read more:… https://t.co/Wq3z1BuYKF
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Israel growth forecast for 2018 downgraded 0.1% to 3.3%. Find out why: https://t.co/phgVA8YdW7
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- What the TPP means for trade in Latin America
- How Student Loan Debt Affects the Economy
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- 2018 & 2019 Economic Outlook for the Top Oil Producing Countries
- Nearly a Third of Latin Americans Have No Right to a Pension
- A Look at Healthcare Models Around the World
- The Poorest Countries in the World
- Newly-elected Chilean President Sebastian Piñera faces a myriad of challenges - economic and otherwise
- The Economic Effects of Trade Protectionism
- Regional Disparity: The Dark Side of Inequality in Latin America
- Coal: The story of the world's most abundant fossil fuel
- Gold: The Most Precious of Metals (Part 3)
- Venezuela's Electoral Conundrum
- Trump's 1st Year: 95 Analysts Surveyed on U.S. Economy
- The Latest on China and What's in Store for 2018
- An in-depth look at the Eurozone’s booming economy and the challenges that lurk in the shadows
- China’s growing influence on the Latin American economy
- Top Economics & Finance Blogs of 2018
- How Latin America emerged from recession in 2017
- Is this the beginning of the end for Bitcoin?
- Risks and Opportunities for 2018 - Daniel Lacalle
- Emerging Markets 2018 Economic Outlook
- The role of FDI in Vietnam’s socio-economic development
- Increasing poverty in Latin America takes a breather thanks to improving economic dynamics
- What will be the most miserable economies in 2018?
- The World's Top 10 Largest Economies
- Is Spain doing enough to address its high youth unemployment rate?
- Has Latin America gone far enough in reducing barriers to international trade?
- Commodities Outlook: Oil, Natural Gas, Coal, Lead & Tin
- 21 experts tell us what the future looks like for cryptocurrencies and blockchain
- Turkish lira plummets to all-time low on Erdogan’s monetary feud and tense U.S.-Turkey relations
- Copper: The first metal mastered by man
- The Mercosur-EU Free Trade Agreement: Obstacles & Opportunities
- Nigerian Economy Still Treading Water Thanks to Oil Sector
- Elections in Chile: What the results could mean for the economy
- QE’s Untold Story: A Chart That Fed Correspondents Need To Investigate
- Holland’s fragile one-seat majority government targets economic growth at the expense of fiscal sustainability
- South Africa: Economy at a tipping point?
- Latin American Commodities: What’s behind the increase in demand and prices?
- Is the UK really "shackled to a corpse"?
- Spain-Catalonia: 7 economic experts weigh in on how the situation will affect the outlook
- How well is Spain's labor market doing since the crisis?
- Which countries will have the highest and lowest inflation in 2017?
- How vulnerable is Latin America to economic crises today?
- Iron ore facts and common questions answered
- The bulging economic costs of obesity
- How much investment is needed to salvage Latin America’s crumbling infrastructure?
- A Look at the Potential Impact of Brexit on the Dutch Economy
- Emerging Markets Are Kicking Into Higher Gear In 2017
- Why is foreign direct investment in Latin America falling again?
- Are Central Banks Nationalising the Economy?
- Bounty or burden? The impact of refugees on European economies is far from clear
- What’s the future of U.S.-Latin America trade relations?
- Taxes or cutbacks? Latin America's challenge of sustaining spending without causing debt to skyrocket
- Are uranium prices making a comeback?
- Taxing the Economy: Achieving a Delicate Balance
- How will Latin America’s upcoming lengthy election cycle affect the reform agenda and credit ratings?
- How will emerging market economies perform in 2017?
- Chilean Economy in Focus: Interview with Senior Economist of the Chamber of Commerce of Santiago
- CEOs Rank Top Economies for Growth Opportunities
- The Mobile Ecosystem & Latin America's Economy
- Prospects and Challenges for the Global Economy: Interview with Tim Cooper from BMI Research
- How will the Fed reduce its balance sheet & and how will the ECB end QE? - 19 economic experts weigh in
- Thoughts on "unwinding" QE from Frances Coppola
- The Fed and ECB at a crossroads: Unwinding QE
- Spain: The economy that continues to silence the critics
- Latin America: The Most Unequal Region in the World
- The History of OPEC: Has it been a Success?
- FocusEconomics Announces 2017 Analyst Forecast Awards Winners
- Latin America’s rising unemployment bucks nearly decade long trend
- Escape from the Central Bank Trap by Daniel Lacalle
- China's economic rebalancing act: What to look out for in 2017
- Driving Growth in Latin America: Challenges & Priorities
- Is the Global Economy Rebalancing?
- Commodity exporters face challenging times
- Recent Global Events Facilitate Mercosur-Pacific Alliance
- 23 economic experts weigh in: Why is productivity growth so low?
- Mexico's outlook as Trump nears 100-day mark
- Interview with Oxford Economics Senior Economist on implications of the possible outcomes of the French Presidential Election
- The anxiety of the small saver in a world of negative interest rates
- Brexit negotiations. Between Uncertainty and Urgency
- An Economic History of the EU from El Blog Salmón
- Baby Boomin': Implications of high population growth in Latin America
- Survey of International Economists Predicts a Le Pen Defeat in French Elections, Says Macron has Best Economic Plan
- Spain in a global context: developed economy with some challenges
- How much is crime costing Latin America?
- Predictions & Estimates from Economist Daniel Lacalle
- What economy will the new Dutch government inherit?
- “The data is not a true reflection of reality in India” Interview with Société Générale India Economist
- What are the prospects for Emerging Economies in 2017?
- What to expect in Asia for 2017
- Top Economics & Finance Blogs of 2017
- Latam to Resume Moderate Growth in 2017 but Important Risks Plague Outlook
- 4 Key European Elections That Will Impact the Economy in 2017
- How are security concerns and political chaos affecting Turkey’s economy?
- Global growth to edge up in 2017
- Set to breach targets again? Debt and deficit outlooks for Southern European Eurozone countries in 2016 & 2017
- What does Donald Trump mean for the U.S. economy?
- How will emerging markets perform in 2017?
- The economic impact of a break in U.S.-Philippines ties
- Trump election: Base metals surge due to infrastructure plan
- 5 updates on the Venezuelan economic crisis
- Canada: When your neighbor’s house is on fire…
- Short-term pain before long-term gain? A look at French labor reform and economic growth
- Asia: Unremarkable growth & unfulfilled promises?
- How India's latest monsoon is affecting the economy
- Innovation in Latin America: Potential Goes Untapped Due to Weak Economic Conditions
- Russian economy update in wake of OPEC deal announcement
- The Wisdom of the Crowds and the Consensus Forecast
- Can the peso predict the U.S. election results?
- There's no end in sight to the Venezuela crisis
- A Look at the European Union Political Calendar
- Survey of international economists shows uncertainty surrounding elections damaging U.S. growth prospects
- FocusEconomics partners with leading online statistics provider Statista
- China: Recent postive economic data may be papering over the cracks
- Sub-Saharan Africa's 2016 & 2017 growth rates
- The Italian Dilemma: Weak banks pose risk to already faltering domestic demand
- How much money do migrants from Latin America send home?
- The U.S.' (Not So) Mysterious Case of the Missing Men
- What to expect from the G20 economies by 2020
- The Pain in Spain: Robust GDP growth cannot mask the persistent structural deficit
- Econometrics Beat: Dave Giles' Blog
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- The Capital Spectator
- Trading Floor: Social trading, news and analysis
- True Economics
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- Real-World Economics Review Blog
- The Winkle Institute for Worldwide Economic Stability
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