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27.09.2016 13:30 WTO lowers global trade growth to 1.7% this year

The World Trade Organization has for the third time lowered its global trade growth forecast for this year to 1.7 per cent, stating that this slowdown is "serious" and should serve as a "wake-up call" for nations. "World trade will grow more slowly than expected in 2016, expanding by just 1.7 per cent, well below the April forecast of 2.8 per cent," according to the latest WTO estimates released today. In September 2015, the WTO estimated that global trade would rise by 3.9 per cent in 2016. It lowered that projection to 2.8 per cent and now to 1.7 per cent. Slowing world trade will have implications for India, which has been witnessing decline in exports. Its outbound shipments are in the negative zone since December 2014. The WTO said: "The contraction was driven (not only) by slowing GDP and trade growth in developing economies such as China and Brazil but also in North America, which had the strongest import growth of any region in 2014-15, but has decelerated since then."

25.09.2016 21:57 10 features that define Russia`s economic crisis

Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev has published an article about the causes and results of the economic crisis in Russia in which he outlines the situation and the options facing Moscow. RBTH presents the 10 key points of Medvedev`s article. Because of the oil price slump, Western sanctions over Ukraine and structural problems, the Russian economy has found itself in a serious crisis. In an article (in Russian) in the official government newspaper Rossiyskaya Gazeta, Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev looks at the main cause of the crisis and its key repercussions, as well as the options the country faces in order to work its way out of crisis. In his opinion, Russia is going through a fundamental overhaul of its economic system.

23.09.2016 10:59 Russian economy crumbles, according to official data

Russian consumers continue to struggle in the second year of a recession, with official data showing that the amount of real disposable income people had in August fell at the fastest pace in seven years. Official government statistics show that Russia`s economy shrank by 4.1 % during the third quarter of 2015 as a recession caused by low oil prices and Western sanctions over Russia`s role in Ukraine`s civil war continued to take its toll. Real disposable income has been falling since 2014 when Russia was hit by Western sanctions over its role in the Ukraine crisis, but the 9.3 % decline, in annual terms, was the steepest since August 2009, the aftermath of the global financial crisis. Real income, adjusted for inflation, also declined, by 1 %, after showing some positive signs earlier this summer, according to the data from the Federal Statistics Service, or Rosstat. With less money to spend, consumers also stayed away from shopping, with retail sales, a barometer of customer demand in Russia, down 5.1 % in August and following a 5.2 % decline in July.

21.09.2016 13:21 OECD: Low-growth trap set to continue; central banks creating market distortions

The world economy remains in a "low-growth trap" and weaker conditions in advanced economies will persist into 2017, the Organization for Economic Co-Operation and Development (OECD) warned on Wednesday. In its interim economic outlook, the OECD forecast that global gross domestic product (GDP) growth is projected to remain flat at around 3 percent in 2016 "with only a modest improvement projected in 2017." It predicts global growth to expand 2.9 percent this year and 3.2 percent in 2017, lifted by China and India. The forecast was largely unchanged since June 2016, the OECD noted, with weaker conditions in advanced economies, including the effects of the U.K.`s vote to leave the European Union (EU), "offset by a gradual improvement in major emerging market commodity producers." "The world economy remains in a low-growth trap with persistent growth disappointments weighing on growth expectations and feeding back into weak trade, investment, productivity and wages," it said.

19.09.2016 12:44 Russia`s economy heading to recovery

Russia`s economy is gradually emerging from contraction and heading to recovery, a global ratings firm says. Standard and Poor`s said in its latest report on the health of the Russian economy that the recession it has faced is coming to an end. It revised its assessment of Russia`s credit risk from negative to stable. The outlook revision reflects our view that external risks have abated to a significant extent, the rating agency said this weekend. We expect the Russian economy and policy making will continue to adjust to the lower oil price environment and that the country will maintain its strong net external asset position and moderate net general government debt burden in 2016-2019, it added in its report. Russia`s GDP contracted 1.2 per cent in Q1 2016 but that slowed to 0.6 per cent in Q2, according to data from the Rosstat federal statistics service. This is a marked improvement to its 3.7 per cent contraction in 2015; it contracted 3.8 per cent in Q4 in 2015.

16.09.2016 10:30 World Bank: Economic toll of air pollution may have cost India 8.5 % of GDP

For India, the economic toll of rising air pollution may be as high as 8.5% of its GDP in 2013 or more than $560 Billion, a World Bank Report has suggested. While air pollution has emerged as the deadliest form of pollution and the fourth leading risk factor for premature deaths worldwide, the economic burden it brings along is massive, a new study by a joint study of the World Bank and the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation (IHME) has suggested. The study, released on Thursday, says air pollution robs nations of significant potential to grow, which after being calculated through total "welfare losses" and loss in labour output, reaches a staggering amount especially for developing countries.

14.09.2016 11:52 Russia Economic Power Shrinking, Losing Market Share

Russia`s economic power is shrinking, and with the worlds oil and gas glut, its chief export is starting lose market share in Europe. A new government report on Russia`s economic output next year shows tepid growth in 2017, and not much to write home about for the next two years either. We will continue to lose our share in the world economy and in fact be weaker, says Kirill Tremasov, head of the Department of Macroeconomic Forecasting at the Ministry of Economic Development. Tremasov expects 2017 oil prices to average around $41 per barrel, hurting GDP growth but at least keeping inflation in check. Following negative growth this year, Tremasov expects growth of 0.7% in 2017, with an average growth rate between 2017-2019 of around 1.5%. We need a growth rate of at least 3.5%, Tremasov said.

12.09.2016 13:22 ACRA: Russia`s Recession Continues, GDP to Shrink 1.5% in 2016

Russia`s recession has not yet ended and activity in a number of key sectors has declined over the past five months, the country`s Analytical Credit Rating Agency (ACRA) said Monday. "Economic statistics for January-July 2016 show that the recession de-facto has not ended. Current seasonally adjusted growth rates of the major sectors remain negative. The mining sector, retail, construction and other basic activities have been declining over the last five months," ACRA said in its latest forecast. Russia`s recession could last until early 2017, with growth rates likely to be restricted to less than 1.5 percent after that even in case oil prices rise, according to the forecast. Russia`s GDP is expected to fall 1.5 percent in 2016 and 0.1 percent next year before returning to growth and expanding 0.5 percent in 2018 and 0.7 percent in 2019.

10.09.2016 10:43 Globalization of the World Economy Hits a Wall

For the first time since early 2014, the dollar value of goods imported and exported by the G20 countries actually grew a little in the second quarter of this year, the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development reported last week. This is probably just because oil prices bounced back a bit after hitting a 12-year low in the first quarter. The world trade volume index maintained by the Netherlands Bureau for Economic Policy Analysis fell 0.7 percent in the second quarter. (The bureau, which also goes by its Dutch initials, CPB, doesn`t actually go out and measure how big the things are that we`re trading with each other; it just adjusts for price and currency fluctuations to give a clearer picture of trade flows.) By this metric, global trade has been sputtering since early 2015, and the sputtering has been getting worse lately, not better. For those who have been following the shipping business, this surely isn`t a big surprise. As Bloomberg Gadfly`s David Fickling and Rani Molla put it Tuesday: "Of the top 15 container lines that were in operation nine months ago, four have gone out of business or are in the process of doing so." Much of the world seems to be in denial about this, though. Fickling and Molla again: "The global container fleet is still getting bigger."

08.09.2016 13:20 Japan revised data show GDP grew 0.7 pct in April-June

Japan`s economy expanded at a better-than-estimated 0.7 percent annualized pace in April-June, according to revised data showing private demand was stronger than earlier reported. An earlier estimate put annualized growth in the April-June quarter at 0.2 percent. The economy grew at a 2.1 percent annualized pace in January-March. The latest data showed business investment fell by a smaller margin than reported in August, while consumer spending was higher. But both remain much slower than hoped for given the government`s targets for growth. Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has proposed an extra set of stimulus measures to help prop up the economic recovery and spur more consumer and corporate spending, which are seen as crucial for sustaining growth. The Bank of Japan is also reviewing its own lavish monetary stimulus policies and is expected to step up its efforts to combat deflation, possibly later this month.


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