IMF delays publication of new global economic forecast to take account of developments in COVID-19

WASHINGTON – The International Monetary Fund (IMF) will publish its World Economic Outlook on January 25, a week later than planned, to take into account the latest developments in coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), a spokesman for the global lender said Tuesday. , amid signs of another downgrade on the way.

“The World Economic Outlook update will be launched on January 25 to enable our teams to incorporate the latest developments related to the COVID-19 pandemic into the economic forecasts,” the spokesman said.

IMF spokesman Gerry Rice told reporters last month that they should expect the January 19 update.

CEO Kristalina Georgieva told Reuters’ next conference last month that the IMF is likely to downgrade its global economic growth forecasts in January toflect the emergence of the Omicron variant of coronavirus.

In October, the IMF had forecast global economic growth of 5.9% in 2021 and 4.9% this year, while underlining the uncertainty posed by the new coronavirus variants.

The coronavirus has killed nearly 5.8 million people worldwide over the past two years.

Economists expect the IMF to cut its economic forecast for the United States, the world’s largest economy, due to the rapid spread of the highly contagious Omicron variant, as well as congressional failure to approve US President Joseph R. Biden’s social and 1, $ 2 trillion. climate spending package.

By October, it had already cut its forecast for U.S. gross domestic product growth in 2021 by a full percentage point to 6%, citing supply chain disruptions and a labor crisis, while expecting growth of 5.2% in 2022.

Since then, the pandemic has escalated again and the division in Congress has deepened.

The United States set a global record of nearly one million new coronavirus infections on Monday, according to a Reuters statement, and its daily average has been a total of 486,000 cases over the past week, a rate higher than in any other country. – Reuters

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