Die Lage der Weltwirtschaft und der deutschen Wirtschaft im Frühjahr 2007

In spring 2007, the global economy remains robust. While growth rates have declined slightly from last year, as business activity in the US has slowed, they continue to reflect an upswing, which by now has held on for a notably long time. Especially the developing and emerging countries have been raising output very fast, due in part to their increasing role in the international division of labour. In the industrialised economies, on the other hand, the current recovery has not been remarkably strong. So far the slowdown in the US economy has not spilled over to other regions and the Euro Area as well as Japan continue to expand at a high pace. Here expansive monetary policy provided a notable support. Buoyant financial markets stimulated the world economy additionally, even though market volatility has increased since the end of February. The US central bank’s current concern with inflationary risks keeps it from loosening its slightly restrictive monetary policy. It will be the second half of the year – when price pressures have eased – until the Fed makes its first rate cut. The ECB, on the other hand, has been preparing financial markets for a further increase in interest rates by summer. In 2007 and 2008 the growth disparities in the industrialised countries will diminish. On one hand, the upswing in the Euro Area will start to moderate, as fiscal policy hampers business activity and monetary policy will not stimulate anymore. On the other hand, the US economy will slowly gain pace from summer onwards; the emerging markets will continue to develop in a highly dynamic fashion. World-GDP in this and next year will likely rise by about 3 ¼ % in 2007, which is still faster than in the average of the last ten years. World trade will rise by 7 ½ % in the coming two years. An oil price of 65 US-Dollar and an exchange rate between the Euro and the US-Dollar of 1.32 were assumed for both years 2007 and 2008. The real estate market in the USA continues to be a risk for...

10. May 2007

Authors DIW Berlin ifo Institut München IfW Kiel IWH RWI Essen

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