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Tuesday, April 09, 2019, 21:59
​IMF cuts global growth outlook to 3.3%, raises China's forecast
By Agencies
Tuesday, April 09, 2019, 21:59 By Agencies

The seal of the International Monetary Fund is seen at the headquarters building in Washington, DC on July 5, 2015. (Mandel Ngan / AFP)

WASHINGTON — The International Monetary Fund is downgrading its outlook for growth in the United States, Europe, Japan and the overall global economy and points to heightened trade tensions as a key reason.

The IMF expects the world economy to grow 3.3 percent this year, down from 3.6 percent in 2018. That would match 2016 for the weakest year since 2009. In its previous forecast in January, the IMF had predicted that international growth would reach 3.5% this year.

The IMF expects the world economy to grow 3.3 percent this year, down from 3.6 percent in 2018. 

For the United States, IMF economists downgraded their growth forecast for this year to 2.3 percent from 2.9 percent in 2018.

The IMF's World Economic Outlook comes on the eve of meetings in Washington this week of the fund and its sister lending organization, the World Bank.

In Europe, the IMF expects the 19 countries that use the euro currency to expand 1.3 percent collectively in 2019, weaker than last year's 1.8 percent growth or in any year since 2013.

READ MORE: IMF warns of slowdown in global growth, urges coordinated efforts

Japan is expected to eke out 1 percent growth this year, up from 0.8 percent in 2018 but slightly down from the fund's earlier forecast.

The IMF foresees the Chinese economy growing 6.3 percent this year, down from 6.6 percent in 2018. But the fund's latest 2019 outlook was a slight upgrade from the 6.2 percent growth it had forecast for China in January.

ALSO READ: 'China to remain key contributor to global GDP growth'

China's prospects brightened, the fund said, after US President Donald Trump decided to suspend a planned increase in tariffs on US$200 billion worth of US-bound Chinese exports.

The prospect of Britain's messy departure from the European Union also weighs on the global economy.

The IMF expects growth in world trade to drop to 3.4 percent this year — a sharp slowdown from the 4 percent it had expected in January and from 3.8 percent trade growth in 2018.

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