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Can anything stop this global cycle of doom The patient is in a critical condition.
The International Monetary Fund is concerned that the global economic recovery has taken too long. Kaushik Basu, chief economist of the World Bank, says the financial crisis has left a "festering wound" that is "refusing to heal". Growth is too weak, resulting in the equivalent of a compromised immune system that has left the economy vulnerable to fresh diseases. The IMF has, yet again, downgraded forecasts for global growth from kate spade laptop sleeve sale 3.4pc to 3.2pc in 2016 and increased its estimate of the chances of a recession to as much as 40pc in the eurozone and Japan. The question now facing the global economy's physicians: is the ailment chronic or acute? This matters. Continually weak economic growth and productivity lower confidence, which, in turn, can lead to companies and investors sitting on their money rather than putting it to work. Christine Lagarde, managing director of the IMF, said last week: "Some parts of the world are downright chilly and that makes it hard to spread economic warmth around the world." Low inflation persists and debt burdens continue to rise. According to IMF calculations, gross public debt in advanced economies is expected to be 107.6pc of GDP on average in 2016, higher than during the Great Depression and approaching levels only ever seen just after the Second World War. Much more of this and the prospect of low growth will become a self fulfilling prophecy. The economic term for this ailment part real, part psychosomatic is secular stagnation. The IMF used its spring meeting last week to deliver a clarion call to governments that financial turmoil and economic stagnation will spread unless decisive action is taken soon. Such advice hasn't always been welcomed. Insiders describe pushback by some governments who have warned the IMF and World Bank not to fuel the doom and gloom. "Some in the past weeks and months have asked us why we're so pessimistic," says one. "They say: 'There isn't a crisis, there isn't a recession, so why is there such a need to act?' "They have, in their oblique way, hinted that calls for action would lead people to be more pessimistic and that would have a mutually reinforcing negative effect. "Often what you get are policymakers saying: 'I didn't agree with your assessment of my country, but everything else is on the money'," says one official. The IMF's message is also very simple. Central banks around the world have been doing the heavy lifting for more than seven years. Monetary policy lowering interest rates and buying assets through quantitative easing programmes has become "overburdened". It is time for governments to step in. Those that can plough money into higher investment, should. And all countries must do more to make their economies more productive by improving education, making it less costly to hire or fire people and supporting innovation and competition. Maurice Obstfeld, the IMF's chief economist, admitted last week that the fund had been "a little repetitive" over the years with its message of reform. "Maybe one could characterise it more charitably as 'consistent'," he joked. Policymakers have found all sorts of ways to get across their message about the need for the right blend of monetary policies, fiscal measures and structural reforms. The IMF calls it a "three pronged approach". The Organisation for Economic Co operation and Development (OECD) describes the remedy as kate spade for less a "three legged stool". Branding aside, the consequences of inaction, or getting the policy mixture wrong, are serious. Jos Vials, head of the IMF's financial stability division, said a prolonged slowdown could reduce expectations of global output over five years by 4pc. "This would be roughly equivalent to forgoing one year of global growth," he said. This is partly because weak growth also leaves the global economy vulnerable to a host of threatening pathogens. The IMF's latest World Economic Outlook identified the most troubling: emerging market weakness, Chinese jitters, Brexit, terrorism. The list goes on. Households are seeing the impact of these threats in their pay packets and on the news. Some believe these threats could now lead countries to shun globalisation and co operation.
Hung Tran, executive managing director of the Institute of International Finance (IIF), which represents the world's biggest banks, describes this as worrying. "If you look around, each country has its own version of populism in the US with the presidential election campaign, in Europe with the Brexit vote," he says. "It kate spade work bag is worrisome because the impact cheap kate spade backpack is further unravelling of the post war international economic financial structure and framework.
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