World Biz
Global business climate cooling, experts "more pessimistic" about eurozone
Last Updated: 2019-02-12 10:17 | Xinhua
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The ifo World Economic Climate index for the first quarter of 2019 fell for the fourth time in a row to minus 13.1 points, the German ifo Institute announced on Monday.

For the fourth quarter of 2018, the index for the global business climate still stood at minus 2.2 points.

"The global economy is slowing down more and more," said Clemens Fuest, president of the ifo Institute. Although the experts' overall valuation of the current global economic situation would still be slightly positive, "expectations and assessments" of the current economic situation have dropped significantly, emphasized Fuest.

The ifo index for the global economic climate in the first quarter of 2019 is based on responses of 1,293 experts from over 100 countries.

The deterioration of the economic climate was especially strong in advanced economies. "The United States in particular saw a slump in expectations and assessments," according to Fuest. Estimates for the economic climate within the European Union were also "revised downwards" by most experts.

The economic climate was significantly cooler for the Middle East and North Africa, according to the ifo Institute, while in emerging and developing countries the experts' assessment of the economic situation remained virtually unchanged, after having declined significantly in the previous two quarters.

The experts surveyed by the ifo Institute expected weaker growth of private consumption, investments and world trade, as well as a worldwide depreciation of the U.S. dollar. The share of experts who expected interest rates to rise in the short and long term has fallen "sharply," added Fuest.

Last week, the ifo index for the eurozone also deteriorated, falling from 6.6 points to minus 11.1 points.

Experts are "more pessimistic about the current situation and future developments," said Fuest. He expected the "pace of economic growth in the eurozone" to slow down.

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