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November / December 2019

  • Activity data suggest the world slowdown is not over. October’s global composite PMI plumbed a new low for the year, close to troughs in the prior two slowdowns of the past decade.
  • Whether slowing services weaken more depends on the resilience of advanced economy consumers. With still-solid jobs growth, consumer spending and sentiment gauges do not suggest households are tightening belts.
  • Policy stimulus, stabilising in trade tensions, and strengthening of some emerging markets could help growth level-off in mid-2020. We forecast 2.5% global growth in 2020 and 2021 – a long way from recession, but very subdued.
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  • With the budget in balance and debt levels and financing costs low, Australia is well placed to loosen fiscal policy. Our modelling shows that raising public investment would be the federal government's most effective lever:

  • Our top calls for 2020 show mixed prospects for the Eurozone. On the plus side, we expect the German automotive sector to turn the corner. But the political situation will see a significant widening in Italian spreads. More here:

  • We present our top calls for 2020. We expect North America to disappoint, with the Fed forced into another rate cut and a high risk of recession in Canada. More here:

  • We present our top 10 calls for 2020. We are more pessimistic than consensus, but the global economy should at least arrest its slide. But the risks are skewed to the downside, with the focus on financial, rather than macroeconomic, imbalances. More here:

  • A strong #USD has been negative for EMs but the impact has varied widely. Our cross-country scorecard of vulnerability to dollar strength has been effective at predicting variation in total bond returns over the past eighteen months:

  • The sharp decline in interest rates has given Spain some welcome fiscal breathing space. But it continues to suffer from a persistent structural deficit and political paralysis means it is unlikely that reforms will be passed to tackle the problems

  • Our policy constraints scorecard shows a clear link between post-crisis underperformance and constraints on the ability to provide monetary and fiscal policy support. 7 Eurozone countries have suffered particularly badly, with 5 still constrained today: