A new world order
The latest forecasts of economic growth put out by the International Monetary Fund (IMF) have three interesting stories to tell.
First, the balance of economic power is shifting away from the countries dependent on oil exports. Russia is expected to grow 3.5 percentage points less than expected in October. Saudi Arabia and Nigeria are also likely to suffer. The oil importers will benefit. But the net effect of weak crude oil prices on global growth will be mildly negative.
Second, India will be one of the rare countries that will see growth climb for the four years to 2016. And the US is the only major economy that has had an upward revision in growth forecasts. The upshot: These two economies will be strengthening in a weak global economy.
Third, India will grow faster than China by 2016. The World Bank has said something similar. China is slowing down for sure. But it would also be useful to remember that similar optimism in earlier years proved to be unfounded.