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Paul the Octopus' forecast on the Thai economy: Swimming with one tentacle

Frederico Gil Sander's picture

Image courtesy of Caitfoto through a Creative Commons license
(Available in: ภาษาไทย)

Following the very successful earlier engagements of a Khmer palm reader and a celebrity turtle-shell fortune teller, the Thailand economic team has recently hired the forecasting star of the moment to divine the future of the economy. I am not talking about Professor Nouriel “Dr. Doom” Roubini, but Octopus Paul, who had to escape Germany in a hurry to avoid becoming “pulpo a la Gallega”. For a hefty fee of a five shrimps, the wise cephalopod spent a few hours in our offices sharing his prognosis for the Thai economy.

Extending the horizon—China’s medium and long term economic outlook

Louis Kuijs's picture

For a while, after the global crisis broke out, we were all preoccupied with short term prospects and developments. More recently, it has become clear that China’s economy is actually growing quite well, helped initially by a massive policy stimulus but with growth having become more broad based recently. At the same time, the global outlook is more subdued now than before the crisis. In all, this is a good time to extend the perspective and revisit medium and longer term economic prospects.

I recently wrote a working paper that discusses a medium term scenario building exercise. The objective was to get a sense of how the pace and composition of growth may develop, both from the production (supply) side and the expenditure (demand) side; whether the outlook has changed because of recent events and what the key implications of the outlook are; and how China’s living standards and the size of the economy may compare internationally in 2020.

I would of course prefer it if everybody diligently read the whole paper (526kb pdf). But, if you have better things to do in the summer during the World Cup Football, here are the key take aways.

South Africa: Growth Acceleration Bodes Well for 2010 (World Cup?) Prospects

Theo Janse van Rensburg's picture

In light of the GDP figures released on 25 May 2010, which indicated that growth accelerated further to 4.6% in 2010q1 (from 3.2% in 2009q4), this short note provides a brief analysis of the implications for GDP growth in calendar 2010 as well as for the South African Government’s Budget Review growth forecast.

Your questions about East Asia and Pacific's economies, answered by World Bank experts

Claudia Gabarain's picture

Ivailo Izvorski, the Lead Economist for the East Asia & Pacific region of the World Bank (and our latest blogger, below this post), and Vikram Nehru, Chief Economist for the region, held a live online chat a couple of days ago where they answered a good number of questions about China's currency, GDP forecasts, free-trade agreements, and structural reforms, among others.

China economic outlook: a tighter macro stance and renewed focus on structural reform

Louis Kuijs's picture

We just released our China Quarterly Update. For us (the economics unit in the World Bank’s Beijing office), this is a good disciplinary device to go through the data, look at what has happened, think about what the economic prospects and policy implications are, look in some more detail into some issues, and write it all down.

In addition to the usual topics, this time we focused a bit on two macro risks that have caught the attention of analysts: a property bubble and strained local government finances. In this blog I summarize our current understanding of the general economic outlook and what it means for policymaking. In a separate blog post, I will soon discuss the issues on local government finances.

The impact of the global crisis on remittances: Case of Russia and Tajikistan

Sudharshan Canagarajah's picture
  Photo © iStockphoto.com

The Russian economy suffered a double blow in 2008; first from the drop in world crude oil prices and secondly from a reversal of capital account inflows. The fall in national income and the adjustment of the balance of payments to the external shocks triggered a steep recession. After recording real GDP growth of 8.1 percent in 2007, growth fell to 5.6 percent on 2008 and then to negative 9 percent in 2009, one of the steepest falls of any major economy. This affected remittances, mainly to other CIS economies, through two channels: first because of a contraction in employment, especially in the cyclically sensitive construction industry and secondly because the depreciation of the Russian rouble, by 51 percent against the US dollar between March 2008 and March 2009, reduced the dollar value of remittances.

Remittances to Tajikistan fell much more sharply in the final quarter of 2008 than can be attributed to seasonal factors alone. The slump continued throughout 2009 with gross inflows of remittances valued in US dollars for the year falling 31 percent below the total for 2008. How did this fall in remittances, of more than $800 million (about one sixth of GDP) relative to the level in 2008, affect the macroeconomy in Tajikistan? There are three possible channels of adjustment to a reduction of foreign exchange inflows of this magnitude.


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