The global economic momentum for 2017 is expected to continue into 2018.
That’s the conclusion from The Conference Board, which is projecting a 3 percent growth rate through next year. The Conference Board also provided projections for 33 mature and 36 emerging market economies for 2018 to 202 and for 2023 to 2027. The tally is part of their annual outlook for the year ahead and beyond.
Bart van Ark, chief economist, global, for The Conference Board, said in a presentation today at company offices, “This past year  turned out to be a pretty good year, even better than what we thought a year ago.”
At last year’s presentation, he said global gross domestic product growth would be around 2.8 percent, and at Thursday’s event said it would likely be 3 percent at year-end, and continue through 2018.
Presuming that growth prediction is correct, that would be good news for mature markets for the short term. The flip side is that the potential for much faster growth is limited, and there’s also the expectation that a slowdown of growth is likely to occur later in the decade.
As for mature markets, U.S. growth is estimated at 2.3 percent for 2017, and expected to grow to 2.6 percent in 2018. But for the years 2018 to 2022, growth is projected to slip to 2.1 percent, and to 1.9 percent for years 2023 to 2027. Helping the U.S. economy has been strength in investments in the non-energy categories, with a particular investment focus on machinery and equipment.
The U.K., facing around a 1.5 percent growth rate, is forecast to slip to 1.1 percent in 2018. It is expected to inch up to 1.6 percent from 2018 to 2022 before sliding down to 1.3 percent for years 2023 to 2027.
China has slowed to 4.2 percent this year, and is forecast to slip to 3.9 percent in 2018, dipping slightly to 3.8 percent for years 2018 through 2022 and down to 3.3 percent for 2022 to 2027.
While the global stage is entering 2018 with high levels of consumer and business confidence, van Ark said there could be some factors that may limit growth during next year.
Because the growth uptick in 2017 reflects a combination of unique events — stabilization of energy and commodities prices, improved business confidence based on hopes for fiscal stimulus and tax reforms by the new U.S. administration, a cyclical recovery in Europe and China’s policy-driven growth stimulus — the likelihood is that these events would be unable to provide sustained growth going forward. And any reduction in investments could limit the speed with which technology can be translated into productivity growth, The Conference Board said. Other factors that could be of concern include policy and geopolitical risks, as well as a slowdown in consumption due to slow real wage growth, despite tighter labor markets.
Van Ark concluded that while “global growth is not fantastic, [growth at] 3 percent is solid. There’s nothing to be pessimistic about [the estimate].”