Economic Outlook

World Economy picks up only slowly

Kiel Institute Economic Outlook World, Nr. 57 (2019 | Q3)

In the first half of 2019, world economic activity has remained sluggish. While economic activity in the industrial countries decelerated in the course of the year,  growth in the emerging economies picked up slightly from a  low base. On a global base, industrial production is especially weak, and world trade has even been declining since the start of the year. World output is forecast to rise by only 3.1 percent in 2019, following 3.7 percent in 2018.  Trade conflicts triggered by the US and uncertainties around the economic repercussions of policies pursued by populist governments in a number of emerging economies are clouding the outlook. In addition, timing and modalities of an eventual Brexit remain unclear. Against this backdrop, world economic growth is projected to remain modest in 2020 at 3.2 percent. Thus we have reduced our forecast for both this year and next by 0.1 percentage point from our June report.  Supported by a more expansive monetary policy and under the assumption that international economic policy tensions will not escalate, we expect a more pronounced strengthening of world economic activity, although growth will remain moderate by historical standards at 3.4 percent.