The world’s GDP growth forecast for 2016 has been revised down nearly 1 percentage point to 2.4 per since since January 2015. Brazil’s economy weighs in the steep downward revision for Latin America, while growth prospects for Eastern Europe look brighter now than they did last month.
Last year things were looking up in Italy. Employment, a sore subject after the international crisis, was growing and the unemployment rate began to fall in 2015 .
But in the last few months this progress flattened. What’s happened? Read more
As the world faces a slowdown in economic growth, we look at what is happening in France and it’s not looking good.
France is one of the worst performing economies in Europe Read more
While the UK can cheer for being nominated for the second year in a row the most open country in the world for data transparency, a warning has been sounded over the widening gap between data haves and have-nots.
Advanced economies top the list of most transparent Read more
The 2015-16 El Niño episode has been either the most or one of the most intense on record, depending on which measure you use.
Going on sea surface temperatures alone, the latest El Niño narrowly edges out 1997-98, the previous strongest. Temperatures in the Niño 3.4 region of the Pacific Ocean — the most commonly used of the regions scientists measure for signs of an developing El Niño or La Niña conditions — peaked at 2.37°C above the long term trend in November 2015, just ahead of the 2.33°C mark reached in 1997. Read more
A survey of leading European economists has put the probability of the UK voting to leave the EU at 41.3 per cent. The experts also believe that a British exit could trim half a percentage point off growth over the next two years
Commodities prices are generally falling but lithium spot price tripled in the past year, driven by demand for batteries used in electric cars and devices. Read more
PSG are so far ahead of their domestic rivals that manager Laurent Blanc has been able to field weakened sides ahead of big Champions League matches at a rate unmatched by any other quarter-finalist, ensuring that his strongest side has been as well-rested as possible. Read more
Japan is embarked on a demographic transition without precedent in human history, the OECD has warned, with its population both declining and ageing rapidly.
In 2050 the share of over 65s will hit 40%, the highest in the world. Read more
Walnut prices in the European Union have fallen by 20 per cent year-on-year as a result of a global supply glut, despite soaring consumption by health-conscious consumers.
EU production is expected to rise by 5 per cent year-on-year to reach 117,000 tonnes for the 2015-16 season. This was intended to meet demand from the EU which has risen, up 2 per cent year-on-year, driven by a buoyant snack industry as consumers become more aware of the health benefits of walnuts with their high nutrient content. Read more
Guest post by Eswar Prasad and Karim Foda
The world economy continues to be beset by mediocre growth, hesitant or impotent policy actions by national governments, and a dearth of confidence among households and businesses. The worst may be over but after yet another year of tepid growth in 2015 the world economy in 2016 faces the unsettling prospect of more of the same—at best. Read more
The US minimum wage, as a proportion of average wages, fell to an all time low in 2005, at just 28 per cent. Plans to lift it to $15 an hour would represent a minimum wage of over 60 per cent of current average earnings
Gun ownership in the US is at its lowest point since record began, according to research from NORC at the University of Chicago.
Their General Social Survey, which NORC has been running since 1972, has found that in 2014 less than a third of Americans owned a firearm or lived with someone who does, compared with about half the population in the late 1970s and early 1980s. Read more
Hosts India squeezed into the semi-finals of the ongoing ICC Twenty20 World Cup largely thanks to a sensational innings from their star batsman Virat Kohli, who hit 82 off 51 balls, without losing his wicket, to take India past Australia and eliminate their opponents in the process.
In doing so he scored more than half of all India’s runs for the match — having almost managed the same two games earlier, scoring 46 per cent of the team’s total in another crucial win, this time against Pakistan. Read more
Pollsters should be more transparent about their methodology and more quizzical about people’s intention to vote, a wide-ranging review of last year’s election polling disaster has recommended – as well as suggesting that Britain needs fewer, but better, political polls.
Polling companies were left embarrassed last year by the surprise Conservative election win, which none of them had accurately predicted. Polls showed Labour and the Conservatives neck and neck in the run-up to the vote last May, but on the night the Tories won an outright majority with a lead of 7 percentage points in the popular vote. Read more
Experts pinpoint why online polls and those made by phone show wide discrepancy Read more
The market is unconvinced about the Federal Reserve’s interest rate projections released this month. At the end of 2018 policymakers see the Fed funds rate at 3 per cent, though the market sees it at 1.1 per cent
England’s Premier League is enjoying one of its most competitive seasons for years, but at the same time the league is without a club in Europe’s top 10 for the first time in 20 years.
The interplay between competitive balance and outright quality of football is a complex one, and depending on who you talk to, different levels of importance are placed on each when it comes to talk of which league is the best. Read more
If the UK were to leave the European Union, it will mean that it will also be outside the Capital Markets Union (CMU), when completed. The CMU is a set of measures designed to clear obstacles between companies and potential investors. The idea – in the words of the European Commission that created it – is “to mobilise capital and channel it to all companies, including SMEs, and infrastructure projects that need it to expand and create jobs”.
The EU economy is slightly bigger than that of the US, but its capital market is very different. Its equity market is about half the size of that of the US and its securitisation market is less than a quarter of the US. Read more