IMF Raises Global Growth Forecasts, But Says Recovery Incomplete

IMF reduces India’s GDP growth forecast to 6.7% for 2017-’18

Danish Siddiqui Reuters

In its twice-yearly World Economic Outlook, the International Monetary Fund predicted that the United Kingdom would grow by 1.7 per cent in 2017 and then 1.5 per cent in 2018. The fund also sharply reduced its estimate of the UK's long-term growth outlook.

The news comes at a time when G20 finance ministers and central bank governors are gathered in Washington for the semi-annual meeting of the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank. Growth over the same period in the 19-member single currency bloc was 0.6 per cent. Others, such as Italy, are forecast to grow faster. "I think we're starting to see those".

In the next six to nine months, the US, Japan, Canada and the majority of European countries are expected to maintain "stable growth momentum", according to the OECD. In terms of 2018, the projected growth rate now stands at 3.7 percent. The consumer price index-based inflation rose from 1.46 per cent in June to 2.36 per cent in July and then further to 3.36 per cent in August.

It means unemployment is expected to remain at its present level of 5.6 per cent for this year, rather than falling to 5.2 per cent as earlier envisaged. In July's outlook, the growth forecast for next year was lowered one percentage point to 3.4 per cent from 4.4 per cent in April, owing to an easing of oil growth to 3.2 per cent, compared with 6.2 per cent in the April forecast. The IMF didn't alter its forecasts for the United Kingdom, keeping expected GDP growth at 1.7% and 1.5% for this year and next, respectively.

The IMF on Tuesday slightly trimmed India's growth projections to 7.4 per. Upon the completion of its regular mission, the global organization has increased the index from 3.5% to 4.3% for 2017.

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In new forecasts published today, the organization predicts global growth to be 3.6% this year and 3.7% next year, a small upgrade from previous projections in July.

"As I said, the takeaway from my visit is the strong impression of the Korean economy", Lagarde said, stressing that the number shows the performance despite the adverse circumstances it faces, such as geopolitical tensions, 1.9 percent inflation, fiscal surplus and a current account "a bit on the high side".

Year to date growth, at 6.4 percent, remains below target.

Mr Obstfeld said he sympathised with the "harsh trade off" facing the Bank of England as it ponders whether to raise interest rates at its November meeting.

It reiterated its call for national governments to support growth through investment and not rely on central bank support.

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