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A quarterly publication setting out the Crédit Agricole scenario for the economy, interest rates and currencies in the main economic regions, ie, the Americas, Europe and Asia.
In the industrialised world, inflation is struggling to pick up. Growth is holding its own but is not accelerating. Monetary policies designed to stimulate economies have reached some of their limitations. Risks are piling up – diffuse and varied. But we do not want our scenario to cause anxiety, even if predicting "the end of the world as we know it" would be the easy strategy.
Our scenario is not exaggeratedly pessimistic – it is just realistic. It observes a new world, one that is politically chaotic and geopolitically worrying. There is no powerful global locomotive able to pull the carriages on which the last few passengers can finally embark. One aggravating factor is that the monetary fireman has been abandoned by his fiscal colleague and is desperately alone in his cab.
The economic growth figure we are now forecasting for 2015 is a tad disappointing. In the industrialised countries, activity may be accelerating more or less everywhere relative to 2014, but it is hesitant. In the advanced economies, the markets continue to benefit from a very upbeat environment. However, new doubts have emerged, this time focused on the emerging countries, starting with the biggest, China.
We have had to revise down our cautiously optimistic March outlook slightly, for two reasons. First, US growth will be lower than expected in 2015 due to a disappointing first quarter. Secondly, the slowdown in the emerging countries will be a little more marked than originally forecast, with recessions in particular. Despite the improved outlook for growth in the Eurozone, the world economy as a whole is ultimately set to grow more slowly in 2015 than in 2014, before a rebound in 2016.
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