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05.05.2012 16:42 Russia`s inflation rate fell to a post-Soviet low in April 2012

Russia`s inflation rate fell to a post-Soviet low in April as prices for grains and vegetables fell from a month earlier. Consumer prices rose 3.6 percent in April from a year earlier, compared with the previous record of 3.7 percent in the previous two months, the Moscow-based Federal Statistics Service said in an e-mailed statement. The median forecast of 15 economists in a Bloomberg survey was 3.7 percent. Prices rose 0.3 percent from March. The decrease puts Russia, the worlds largest energy exporter, closer to its target of keeping inflation between 5 percent and 6 percent following a record-low 6.1 percent last year. While delayed increases to utility prices and a strong harvest are still restraining prices, monetary policy is also playing a role, according to Ivan Tchakarov, chief economist at Renaissance Capital in Moscow. The central bank, unfortunately in my view, is giving much more weight to inflation concerns rather than to growth concerns, he said. Core inflation, which strips out some volatile items, was 0.4 percent in the month, the statistics service said.

18.04.2012 17:14 IMF: The global economy is on track to expand this year by 3.5 per cent and by 4.1 per cent next year

GLOBAL growth is slowly improving as the US recovery gains traction and dangers from Europe recede, but risks remain elevated and the situation is very fragile, the International Monetary Fund said. Another flare-up of the eurozone sovereign debt crisis or sharp escalation in oil prices on geopolitical uncertainty could disrupt the world economy finding its feet now tensions in the eurozone have subsided. The global economy is on track to expand this year by 3.5 per cent and by 4.1 per cent next year, up slightly from 3.3 per cent and 3.9 per cent gross domestic product output respectively that the IMF had forecast in January, when market concern was rampant that Greece could default and Italy and Spain were facing budget crises. Since then, Greece has restructured its debt, Italy and Spain are adopting tough fiscal measures and eurozone leaders have agreed to enlarge their bailout fund, causing financial market tensions to ease. The United States, meanwhile, is gradually gaining momentum while China and other emerging economies appear on track for gradual slowdowns without crashing, the IMF said. But the gains are precarious. Should the eurozone crisis erupt once more, it could trigger a widespread dumping of risky assets and rob two per cent from global growth over two years and 3.5 per cent from the eurozone, the Fund warned. Additionally, a 50 per cent increase in the price of oil would lower global output by 1.25 per cent, it said. To secure the global recovery, the IMF urged central banks in the United States, eurozone and Japan to stand ready to deliver further monetary easing; governments to exercise caution over the pace of budget cutbacks wherever feasible; and Europe to consider using public funds to recapitalise banks. The International Monetary Fund (IMF) said that Russia`s 2012 GDP growth could reach 4 percent, up from its January prediction of 3.3 percent. In its latest World Economic Outlook, the IMF also raised its 2013 growth outlook for Russia from 3.5 percent to 3.9 percent.

12.04.2012 10:39 U.S. unemployment at 8.2 percent in March, little change from prior month

The country`s employers added 120,000 jobs in March as the unemployment rate fell to 8.2 percent, the Labor Department reported. The stock markets in the U.S. are closed today for the Good Friday holiday, so investors won`t get a chance to act on the jobs news until Monday. Stock futures, which indicate how the market will react when trading resumes, showed the Dow Jones industrial average down 120 points. The job additions may disappoint some people. Economists expected 210,000 jobs to be added in March and the unemployment rate to stay at 8.3 percent as more discouraged workers reentered the job market. February`s jobs added was revised up to 275,000 from 227,000 jobs, which was slightly more than expected and capped the best six-month streak for job additions since the depths of the financial crisis in 2008. January was revised lower to 275,000 from 284,000 jobs added.

08.04.2012 16:38 The Russian Economic Development Ministry forecasts GDP will grow 3.4% in 2012

The Russian Economic Development Ministry forecasts GDP will grow 3.4% in 2012, 3.8% in 2013 and 4.4% in 2014. Urals crude could trade at $125 a barrel in 2012, $125 in 2013 and $115 in 2014. GDP grew 4.3% in 2011, as in 2010. Russia`s Economy Ministry expects $10-$20 billion in net capital outflows to flee the country in 2012, Deputy Economy Minister Andrei Klepach said. Klepach told a briefing that the ministry has revised its 2012 forecast of an average ruble rate to 29.2 rubles per dollar from 31.1 rubles. Budget deficit in 2012 is seen at 0.5 percent of gross domestic product (GDP) while the economy itself will grow 3.8 percent in 2013 compared to a previous forecast of a 3.9 percent growth, he said. The ministry also lowered its forecast for industrial output growth to 3.1 percent from 3.6 percent in 2012, and to 3.4 percent from 3.8 percent in 2013, Klepach said.

16.03.2012 17:53 US industrial production was unchanged in February 2012

Industrial production was unchanged in February after having risen 0.4 percent in January. Previously, industrial production was reported to have been unchanged in January. Manufacturing output moved up 0.3 percent in February. Within manufacturing, the index for motor vehicles and parts fell 1.1 percent after jumping 8.6 percent in January, but the index for manufacturing excluding motor vehicles and parts increased 0.4 percent in February. Production at mines fell 1.2 percent, while the output of utilities was unchanged. At 96.2 percent of its 2007 average, total industrial production for February was 4.0 percent above its year-earlier level. Capacity utilization for total industry edged down to 78.7 percent, a rate 1.2 percentage points above its level from a year earlier but 1.6 percentage points below its long-run (1972-2011) average.

15.03.2012 20:21 G20 GDP for the fourth quarter of 2011 slows to +0.7% in the fourth quarter of 2011

Quarterly GDP growth in the G20 slowed to +0.7% in the fourth quarter of 2011, compared with +0.9% in the third quarter, according to provisional results. In 2011 as a whole, G20 GDP rose by 2.8%, a marked deceleration compared with the +5.0% growth recorded in 2010. The G20 GDP aggregate masks diverging patterns among the world`s largest economies. In the United States, GDP growth increased to +0.7% in the fourth quarter of 2011, compared with +0.5% in the third quarter. In India and Indonesia growth increased strongly, but slowed in China to +2.0%, compared with +2.3% in the third quarter. In Japan, economic growth decreased to -0.2%, following the strong rebound (+1.7%) in the third quarter. GDP fell by 0.3% in both the EU27 and the euro area in the fourth quarter of 2011, the first fall since the second quarter of 2009. The release of the G20 GDP aggregate marks the first release of a G20 aggregate in the context of the implementation of the Data Gaps Initiative - a set of 20 recommendations on the further enhancement of statistics as agreed by the G20 Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors. The process is coordinated by the Inter Agency Group on Economic and Financial Statistics: International Monetary Fund, Bank for International Settlements, European Central Bank, Eurostat, OECD, United Nations and the World Bank. The dissemination of this G20 aggregate provides a timely measure of economic growth for the G20. In the future the G20 aggregate will become part of a new regular OECD quarterly News Release on economic growth at around 70 days after the end of the reference quarter. In addition to providing the data for the EU27 and the euro area, Eurostat, the statistical office of the European Union, will also publish the quarterly G20 GDP growth on its website.

18.02.2012 17:26 GDP fell by 0.3% in both the euro area and the EU27 during the fourth quarter of 2011

GDP fell by 0.3% in both the euro area (EA17) and the EU27 during the fourth quarter of 2011, compared with the previous quarter, according to flash estimates published by Eurostat, the statistical office of the European Union. In the third quarter of 2011, growth rates were +0.1% and +0.3% respectively. Compared with the same quarter of the previous year, seasonally adjusted GDP increased by 0.7% in the euro area and by 0.9% in the EU27 in the fourth quarter of 2011, after +1.3% and +1.4% respectively in the previous quarter. Over the whole year 2011, GDP increased by 1.5% in the euro area and by 1.6% in the EU27. In December 2011 compared with November 2011, seasonally adjusted industrial production fell by 1.1% in the euro area (EA17) and by 0.6% in the EU27. In November production remained stable in both zones. In December 2011 compared with December 2010, industrial production dropped by 2.0% in the euro area and by 0.9% in the EU27. Compared with 2010, the average production index for 2011 increased by 3.5% in the euro area and by 3.3% in the EU27. In December 2011 compared with November 2011, production of energy fell by 2.0% in the euro area and by 1.2% in the EU27. Capital goods decreased by 0.8% and 0.1% respectively. Intermediate goods dropped by 0.7% in the euro area and by 0.2% in the EU27. Non-durable consumer goods remained stable in the euro area and rose by 0.4% in the EU27. Production of durable consumer goods increased by 0.2% and 0.4% respectively. Among the Member States for which data are available, industrial production fell in twelve and rose in eleven. The largest decreases were registered in Malta (-2.9%), Germany (-2.7%), Greece and Latvia (both -2.4%), and the highest increases in Denmark (+3.3%), Finland (+2.6%) and Ireland (+2.5%). In December 2011 compared with December 2010, production of energy fell by 11.9% in the euro area and by 10.6% in the EU27. Durable consumer goods decreased by 3.9% and 0.7% respectively. Non-durable consumer goods dropped by 0.8% in the euro area, but rose by 0.8% in the EU27. Intermediate goods fell by 0.5% in the euro area, but grew by 0.5% in the EU27. Capital goods increased by 0.8% and 2.3% respectively. Among the Member States for which data are available, industrial production fell in fifteen and rose in eight. The highest decreases were registered in Greece (-12.4%), Luxembourg (-9.6%) and Portugal (-8.9%), and the largest increases in Poland (+10.0%), the Czech Republic (+4.4%) and Latvia (+3.2%). The first estimate for the euro area (EA17) trade in goods balance with the rest of the world in December 2011 gave a 9.7 bn euro surplus, compared with -1.7 bn in December 2010. The November 2011 balance was +6.3 bn, compared with -2.3 bn in November 2010. In December 2011 compared with November 2011, seasonally adjusted exports rose by 0.1% while imports fell by 0.9%. The first estimate for the December 2011 extra-EU271 trade balance was a 1.7 bn euro surplus, compared with -12.1 bn in December 2010. In November 20112 the balance was -7.5 bn, compared with -16.8 bn in November 2010. In December 2011 compared with November 2011, seasonally adjusted exports rose by 1.4% while imports fell by 0.5%. During 2011, euro area trade recorded a deficit of 7.7 bn euro, compared with -14.7 bn in 2010. The EU27 recorded a deficit of 152.8 bn in 2011, compared with -159.5 bn in 2010.

05.02.2012 17:46 Saxo Bank Outlook 2012: A Year of Great Change

Saxo Bank, the online trading and investment specialist, in its Q1 2012 Financial Outlook, believes that a perfect storm is pending as tensions are mounting unbearably. The combination of the ongoing EU crisis, slowing aggregated global demand and rising social tensions will leave no nation untouched and could result in the most pivotal year by far since 2008. Overall, the Bank looks for world growth to slow in 2012 to 3 percent. Saxo Bank believes that a renewed crisis in the EU is inevitable as the leaders of the Union have failed to address the fact that the sovereign debt crisis is one of solvency and not liquidity provision, and its growth outlook for Europe is mostly negative. In the US, growth will likely be somewhat stronger than elsewhere. In Asia, growth will likely look far weaker than consensus, as China faces some heavy lifting on rebalancing its economy. Uncertainty is great in this area as the regime is capable of forcing activity and behaviour to a degree not attainable elsewhere. The surge in commodities in 2011, partly due to the initiation of the US Federal Reserve`s Quantitative Easing 2 programme, saw the outlook for the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) improve. As the effects of commodity speculation fade, the MENA region faces headwinds though it should manage around 3.5 percent growth in GDP as domestic demand returns. Crucial for economic growth are stabilisation in the political sphere following a roller coaster ride in 2011, which saw several changes of government including that of Libya. Steen Jakobsen, Chief Economist at Saxo Bank comments: "The perfect storm is coming but there is no need to panic. We are optimistic that 2012 will be a year of great change and a perfect storm in the MENA area is based on good underlying fundamentals combined with almost imperfect visibility on geopolitical risk."

27.01.2012 16:45 Russia`s industrial production rose in 2011 a total of 4.7 percent

Russia`s industrial production rose in 2011 a total of 4.7 percent. This is stated in a report on the country`s industrial production which the state statistics agency Rosstat published. The increase includes all major industry sectors: oil (+ 0.8 percent), gas (+ 2.9), cars (+ 44.5), trucks (+ 6.6 percent). Electricity production in Russia in 2011 increased from the previous year by 1.4 percent and has reached 1.05 trillion kilowatt hours. Oil production in the Russian Federation increased in 2011 by 0.8 percent compared to last year and amounted to 509 million tons. Gas production has increased in the reporting year by 2.9 percent to 669 billion cubic meters. The production of LNG (liquefied gas) was increased by 6.6 percent to 10.7 million tons. Production of passenger cars in Russia in 2011 increased compared to 2010 with 44.5 percent to 1.7 million. Production of buses rose in 2011 by 4.3 percent to 43,100 units. Production of trucks increased last year by 33.4 percent to 207,000 vehicles. Growth in industrial production in Russia in 2011 amounted to 4.7 percent. In December 2011 was the growth of industrial production from December 2010 2.5 percent, from November 2011 2.9 percent.

19.01.2012 21:08 World Bank slashes global GDP forecasts, outlook grim

The World Bank warned developing countries to prepare for the "real" risk that an escalation in the euro area debt crisis could tip the world into a slump on a par with the global downturn in 2008/09. In a report sharply cutting its world economic growth expectations, the World Bank said Europe was probably already in recession. If the euro area debt crisis deepened, global economic forecasts would be significantly lower. The World Bank predicted world economic growth of 2.5 per cent in 2012 and 3.1 per cent in 2013, well below the 3.6 per cent growth for each year projected in June. The World Bank said if the euro area debt crisis escalates, global growth would be about 4 per centage points lower. It forecast high-income economies would expand just 1.4 per cent in 2012 as the euro area shrinks 0.3 per cent, sharp downward revisions from growth forecasts last June of 2.7 per cent and 1.8 per cent, respectively. It cut its forecast for growth in developing economies to 5.4 per cent for 2012 from its previous forecast of 6.2 per cent, saying expansion in Brazil and India and to a lesser extent Russia, South Africa and Turkey, had slowed already. It saw a slight pick up in growth in developing economies in 2013 to 6 per cent. But the report said threats to growth are still rising, suggesting the outlook remained highly uncertain. It also cited failure so far to resolve high debts and deficits in Japan and the United States and slow growth in other high-income countries, and cautioned those could trigger sudden shocks. On top of that, political tensions in the Middle East and North Africa could disrupt oil supplies and add another blow to global prospects. It said that while Europe was moving toward a long-term solution to its debt problems, markets remained skittish. On balance, the World Bank said global economic conditions were "fragile and there remains great uncertainty as to how markets will evolve over the medium term."


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