Front Matter

Front Matter

Author(s):
International Monetary Fund. Research Dept.
Published Date:
April 2015
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World Economic and Financial Surveys

World Economic Outlook

April 2015

Uneven Growth

Short- and Long-Term Factors

©2015 International Monetary Fund

Cover and Design: Luisa Menjivar and Jorge Salazar

Composition: AGS

Cataloging-in-Publication Data

Joint Bank-Fund Library

World economic outlook (International Monetary Fund)

World economic outlook : a survey by the staff of the International Monetary Fund. — Washington, DC : International Monetary Fund, 1980–

v. ; 28 cm. — (1981–1984: Occasional paper / International Monetary Fund, 0251-6365). — (1986– : World economic and financial surveys, 0256-6877)

Semiannual. Some issues also have thematic titles.

Has occasional updates, 1984–

ISSN (print) 0256-6877

ISSN (online) 1564-5215

1. Economic development — Periodicals. 2. Economic forecasting — Periodicals. 3. Economic policy — Periodicals. 4. International economic relations — Periodicals. I. International Monetary Fund. II. Series: Occasional paper (International Monetary Fund). III. Series: World economic and financial surveys.

HC10.80

ISBN 978-1-49837-8-000 (paper)

978-1-47551-705-7 (PDF)

978-1-47554-291-2 (ePub)

978-1-47551-937-2 (Mobi)

The World Economic Outlook (WEO) is a survey by the IMF staff published twice a year, in the spring and fall. The WEO is prepared by the IMF staff and has benefited from comments and suggestions by Executive Directors following their discussion of the report on April 3, 2015. The views expressed in this publication are those of the IMF staff and do not necessarily represent the views of the IMF’s Executive Directors or their national authorities.

Recommended citation: International Monetary Fund. 2015. World Economic Outlook: Uneven Growth—Short- and Long-Term Factors. Washington (April).

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Contents

Assumptions and Conventions

A number of assumptions have been adopted for the projections presented in the World Economic Outlook (WEO). It has been assumed that real effective exchange rates remained constant at their average levels during February 6–March 6, 2015, except for those for the currencies participating in the European exchange rate mechanism II (ERM II), which are assumed to have remained constant in nominal terms relative to the euro; that established policies of national authorities will be maintained (for specific assumptions about fiscal and monetary policies for selected economies, see Box A1 in the Statistical Appendix); that the average price of oil will be $58.14 a barrel in 2015 and $65.65 a barrel in 2016 and will remain unchanged in real terms over the medium term; that the six-month London interbank offered rate (LIBOR) on U.S. dollar deposits will average 0.7 percent in 2015 and 1.9 percent in 2016; that the three-month euro deposit rate will average 0.0 percent in 2015 and 2016; and that the six-month Japanese yen deposit rate will yield on average 0.1 percent in 2015 and 0.2 percent in 2016. These are, of course, working hypotheses rather than forecasts, and the uncertainties surrounding them add to the margin of error that would in any event be involved in the projections. The estimates and projections are based on statistical information available through April 3, 2015.

The following conventions are used throughout the WEO:

  • . . . to indicate that data are not available or not applicable;

  • – between years or months (for example, 2014–15 or January–June) to indicate the years or months covered, including the beginning and ending years or months;

  • / between years or months (for example, 2014/15) to indicate a fiscal or financial year.

  • “Billion” means a thousand million; “trillion” means a thousand billion.

“Basis points” refers to hundredths of 1 percentage point (for example, 25 basis points are equivalent to ¼ of 1 percentage point).

Data refer to calendar years, except in the case of a few countries that use fiscal years. Please refer to Table F in the Statistical Appendix, which lists the economies with exceptional reporting periods for national accounts and government finance data for each country.

For some countries, the figures for 2014 and earlier are based on estimates rather than actual outturns. Please refer to Table G in the Statistical Appendix, which lists the latest actual outturns for the indicators in the national accounts, prices, government finance, and balance of payments indicators for each country.

  • On January 1, 2015, Lithuania became the 19th country to join the euro area. Data for Lithuania are not included in the euro area aggregates because Eurostat has not fully released the consolidated data for the group, but the data are included in the advanced economies and subgroups aggregated by the WEO.

  • As in the October 2014 WEO, data for Syria are excluded from 2011 onward because of the uncertain political situation.

  • As in the October 2014 WEO, the consumer price projections for Argentina are excluded because of a structural break in the data. Please refer to note 6 in Table A7 for further details.

  • Because of the ongoing IMF program with Pakistan, the series from which nominal exchange rate assumptions are calculated are not made public—the nominal exchange rate is a market-sensitive issue in Pakistan.

  • The series from which the nominal exchange rate assumptions are calculated are not made public for Egypt because the nominal exchange rate is a market-sensitive issue in Egypt.

  • Starting with the April 2015 WEO, the classification for official external financing among emerging market and developing economies classified as net debtors has been eliminated because of a lack of available data.

    If no source is listed on tables and figures, data are drawn from the WEO database.

    When countries are not listed alphabetically, they are ordered on the basis of economic size.

    Minor discrepancies between sums of constituent figures and totals shown reflect rounding.

As used in this report, the terms “country” and “economy” do not in all cases refer to a territorial entity that is a state as understood by international law and practice. As used here, the term also covers some territorial entities that are not states but for which statistical data are maintained on a separate and independent basis.

Composite data are provided for various groups of countries organized according to economic characteristics or region. Unless noted otherwise, country group composites represent calculations based on 90 percent or more of the weighted group data.

The boundaries, colors, denominations, and any other information shown on the maps do not imply, on the part of the International Monetary Fund, any judgment on the legal status of any territory or any endorsement or acceptance of such boundaries.

Further Information and Data

This version of the World Economic Outlook (WEO) is available in full through the IMF eLibrary (www.elibrary.imf.org) and the IMF website (www.imf.org). Accompanying the publication on the IMF website is a larger compilation of data from the WEO database than is included in the report itself, including files containing the series most frequently requested by readers. These files may be downloaded for use in a variety of software packages.

The data appearing in the World Economic Outlook are compiled by the IMF staff at the time of the WEO exercises. The historical data and projections are based on the information gathered by the IMF country desk officers in the context of their missions to IMF member countries and through their ongoing analysis of the evolving situation in each country. Historical data are updated on a continual basis as more information becomes available, and structural breaks in data are often adjusted to produce smooth series with the use of splicing and other techniques. IMF staff estimates continue to serve as proxies for historical series when complete information is unavailable. As a result, WEO data can differ from those in other sources with official data, including the IMF’s International Financial Statistics.

The WEO data and metadata provided are “as is” and “as available,” and every effort is made to ensure their timeliness, accuracy, and completeness, but it cannot be guaranteed. When errors are discovered, there is a concerted effort to correct them as appropriate and feasible. Corrections and revisions made after publication are incorporated into the electronic editions available from the IMF eLibrary (www.elibrary.imf.org) and on the IMF website (www.imf.org). All substantive changes are listed in detail in the online tables of contents.

For details on the terms and conditions for usage of the WEO database, please refer to the IMF Copyright and Usage website (www.imf.org/external/terms.htm).

Inquiries about the content of the World Economic Outlook and the WEO database should be sent by mail, fax, or online forum (telephone inquiries cannot be accepted):

World Economic Studies Division

Research Department

International Monetary Fund

700 19th Street, N.W.

Washington, DC 20431, U.S.A.

Fax: (202) 623-6343

Online Forum: www.imf.org/weoforum

Preface

The analysis and projections contained in the World Economic Outlook are integral elements of the IMF’s surveillance of economic developments and policies in its member countries, of developments in international financial markets, and of the global economic system. The survey of prospects and policies is the product of a comprehensive interdepartmental review of world economic developments, which draws primarily on information the IMF staff gathers through its consultations with member countries. These consultations are carried out in particular by the IMF’s area departments—namely, the African Department, Asia and Pacific Department, European Department, Middle East and Central Asia Department, and Western Hemisphere Department—together with the Strategy, Policy, and Review Department, the Monetary and Capital Markets Department, and the Fiscal Affairs Department.

The analysis in this report was coordinated in the Research Department under the general direction of Olivier Blanchard, Economic Counsellor and Director of Research. The project was directed by Gian Maria Milesi-Ferretti, Deputy Director, Research Department, and Thomas Helbling, Division Chief, Research Department.

The primary contributors to this report were Abdul Abiad, Aseel Almansour, Aqib Aslam, Samya Beidas-Strom, Patrick Blagrave, Oya Celasun, Mai Dao, Davide Furceri, Roberto Garcia-Saltos, Sinem Kilic Celik, Daniel Leigh, Seok Gil Park, Marco Terrones, Hui Tong, Juan Yépez Albornoz, and Fan Zhang.

Other contributors include Ali Alichi, Rabah Arezki, Angana Banerji, Sami Ben Naceur, Helge Berger, Emine Boz, Ernesto Crivelli, Era Dabla-Norris, Harald Finger, Roberto Guimarães-Filho, Amr Hosny, Benjamin Hunt, Minsuk Kim, Nicolas Magud, Akito Matsumoto, Andre Meier, Pritha Mitra, Mico Mrkaic, Bhaswar Mukhopadhyay, Carolina Osorio Buitron, Marco Pani, Pau Rabanal, Jesmin Rahman, Michele Ruta, Annika Schnücker, Sebastian Sosa, Ara Stepanyan, Shane Streifel, Marzie Taheri Sanjani, Natalia Tamirisa, Bruno Versailles, Kevin Wiseman, and Aleksandra Zdzienicka.

Gavin Asdorian, Joshua Bosshardt, Angela Espiritu, Rachel Fan, Mitko Grigorov, Hao Jiang, Yun Liu, Olivia Ma, Vanessa Diaz Montelongo, Rachel Szymanski, and Hong Yang provided research assistance. Mahnaz Hemmati, Toh Kuan, Emory Oakes, and Richard Watson provided technical support. Alimata Kini Kaboré and Anduriña Espinoza-Wasil were responsible for word processing. Michael Harrup from the Communications Department led the editorial team and managed the report’s production, with support from Linda Kean and Joe Procopio and editorial assistance from Cathy Gagnet, Lucy Scott Morales, Sherrie Brown, Gregg Forte, Linda Long, and EEI Communications.

The Core Data Management team from the IMF’s IT department and external consultant Pavel Pimenov provided additional technical support.

The analysis has benefited from comments and suggestions by staff members from other IMF departments, as well as by Executive Directors following their discussion of the report on April 3, 2015. However, both projections and policy considerations are those of the IMF staff and should not be attributed to Executive Directors or to their national authorities.

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