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  • World – Macroeconomic Scenario for 2019-2020: prevention better than cure

    Edition April 15, 2019

    In the US, the strength of the labour market (where the unemployment rate is at an all-time low despite the fact that the participation rate is not falling) has finally led to a rise in average wages, which, without any increase in inflation, will eat into firms' margins and productive investment. The contribution from net external demand is likely to be only very slightly negative, enabling growth to edge down ‘gently' towards its potential level of 2%.

    In the Eurozone, a marked drop in foreign demand is behind the sharp slowdown in growth. The slowdown has triggered fears that Eurozone growth, which came late to the phase of swift expansion, could brutally and prematurely drop off. But, as wages take up the slack from jobs, demand from households (consumption and housing investment) is proving resilient. Firms' high margin ratios and continued easy access to financing are conducive to investment. On the other hand, the outlook for any recovery in external demand is uncertain, and it is the incentive for investment that is giving way. Failing any recovery in exports, growth seems unlikely to exceed 1.2% in 2019.

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  • Macroeconomic Scenario for 2019-2020: plenty of twists and turns to negotiate cautiously

    Edition December 21, 2018

    In the Eurozone, against a backdrop of an accommodative monetary policy and a fiscal policy that is making a positive contribution to growth, the still-robust nature of fundamentals points to the maturity of the cycle but not its imminent demise. Supply-side pressures, which emerged at the peak of the cycle in late 2017, have progressively faded. They no longer seem able to generate the kind of margin erosion that would trigger a sudden downturn. Eurozone growth, which is fated to shift gradually to a pace more in line with its estimated 1.5% potential, was following a normal path – namely that of a slowdown – falling from an annualised 2.8% in summer 2017 to 2.2% in spring 2018. Since the summer, however, the deceleration has gathered pace and the still-favourable information provided by the hard figures is being disputed by the worsening sentiment derived from the surveys.

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  • France: 2018-2019 Scenario

    Edition 24 October 2018

    The first half was marked by a certain desynchronisation among the main economic regions. Growth remained upbeat in the United States and fairly stable in the eurozone, while some emerging countries experienced specific difficulties. In France, the growth outlook has been revised down slightly. After 2.3% growth in 2017, we are forecasting further fairly robust growth in 2018 and 2019 at 1.6% a year.

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  • World – Macroeconomic Scenario for 2018-2019: "And yet it moves"

    Edition October 4, 2018

    Risk-aversion translates into periods of severe turbulence and increased volatility. It justifies the fact that core long-term rates are not picking up significantly, despite upbeat growth in the US, satisfactory nominal growth in Germany and a strong USD. Risk can also, obviously, lead to a downward revision to growth forecasts and negatively affect investment behaviour.

    Thus, things could prove delicate in 2020, with a widespread downswing in growth. In the US, when the fiscal stimulus has largely run its course and the fed funds rate is in restrictive territory, growth will inevitably slow sharply. The Eurozone, for its part, will need to cope with significantly more difficult times without having built up the kind of room-for-manoeuvre needed to boost dangerously flagging growth.

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  • France – Scenario 2018-2019

    Edition 25 July 2018

    In 2016, and for the third consecutive year, growth stood at around 1% in France. It then accelerated sharply in 2017, to 2.3%. For 2018 and 2019, we expect growth to remain strong, at 1.8% and 1.7%, respectively.

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  • World – Macroeconomic Scenario for 2018-2019: The end is not yet nigh

    Edition July 10, 2018

    In the Eurozone, the economic slowdown in Q118 has raised a number of questions, often met by overly pessimistic, even alarmist, responses. However, the shock, which can be put down to relatively sluggish exports, does not signal an early end to the growth cycle. There are no crippling constraints on supply, particularly when it comes to the workforce: labour tensions will not derail growth. Growth is subsiding and is coming under threat from external factors, with the tightening of US monetary policy less worrying than the risk of a trade war escalation. In light of the likely retaliation by the US's trading partners (though they would have to be moderate, given the losses such retaliation would entail for the countries concerned), it would be overambitious to put a figure on the potential cost of a war that has yet to take shape fully. A trade war would obviously hamper growth. However, even now, before any escalation has occurred, the potential damage to confidence and the ensuing adverse effect on investment decisions is a real cause for concern, in our view.

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  • France – Competitiveness and market shares

    Edition July 2, 2018

    France is showing symptoms of a competitiveness gap. These include the loss of share of French exports in world exports and the persistent trade deficit. They reflect poor export performances and robust imports. With very few exceptions, foreign trade has contributed negatively to growth in France since the early 2000s.

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  • World - Macroeconomic Scenario for 2018-2019: When it comes to growth, better may prove to be the enemy of good

    Edition April 4, 2018

    In the Eurozone, the recovery phase, accompanied by its share of nice surprises, is now behind us and the economy is settling into its growth phase. The sometimes disappointing findings of the surveys are not flagging up a cyclical reversal, but its natural slowdown. They reflect nothing more than expectations adapting to reality. The confidence of economic agents has become more consistent, thanks to the strength of developments in the real economy. The strength of the fundamentals suggests further sustained growth rates, of close to 2.4% in 2018 and 2.1% in 2019, with no significant pick-up in inflation. Thus, there is no threat of a monetary emergency and the ECB's monetary policy should very gradually become less accommodative.

    The emerging world should see stable growth of around 4.7% in 2018 – satisfactory without setting pulses racing.

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  • Germany – 2017-2018 scenario: Outlook at Q4-2017

    Edition January 17, 2018

    Our scenario for the German activity is based on a solid growth of 2.6% in 2017 and 2018. It's mainly supported by a strong domestic demand driven by both private consumption and productive investment. However, the surge in net exports also seems to contribute more sustainably to this phase of expansion of the economic cycle.

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  • World – Macroeconomic Scenario for 2018-2019: Cruel Imagination...

    Edition December 21, 2017

    There is still no threat of inflationary pressure. By end-2018, inflation is forecast to reach 2.2% in the US and 1.4% in the Eurozone. Central banks are not lagging behind the real cycle, so there is no monetary urgency. Monetary policies, which are accommodative despite actual or planned tightening, are underpinning growth. The resorption of public imbalances is made easier by low interest rates and there is no reason why rates should rise suddenly. We continue to forecast a very slow increase in long-term rates and in real rates, which look set to remain at record-low levels or even in negative territory.

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