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Mounting headwinds to take the shine off the recovery

We expect regional GDP growth to come in below expectations this year as high inflation erodes households’ real incomes and policy becomes more restrictive. Despite this view on the growth outlook, we think that persistent capacity constraints will mean that inflation ultimately settles at a higher level than is currently appreciated. This feeds into our relatively hawkish interest rate forecasts, particularly in Russia, Poland and Czechia.
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More from Emerging Europe

Emerging Europe Economics Update

Q&A on Russia’s budget, deficit financing & default

In this Update, we answer a number of key questions on Russia’s public finances, including the likelihood of a sovereign default, the impact of higher energy prices and the collapse of the economy on the budget position, and how the government would be able to finance a budget deficit.

23 May 2022

Emerging Europe Economics Update

Bank of Israel steps up tightening

The Bank of Israel hiked its policy by a larger-than-expected 40bp today, to 0.75%, and the backdrop of a strong economy, tight labour market and mounting inflation pressures means that we think it will deliver further hikes at its upcoming meetings, to 2.25% by early next year.

23 May 2022

Emerging Europe Data Response

Poland Activity Data (Apr.)

April’s activity data for Poland suggest that the economy lost some steam at the start of Q2 and the effects of the war in Ukraine will remain a key headwind over the coming months. That said, we think Poland will avoid a contraction and outperform its peers in the rest of the region over 2022 as a whole.

23 May 2022

More from Emerging Europe Economics Team

Emerging Europe Chart Book

Omicron? Central banks focusing firmly on inflation

Inflation pressures have shown no signs of letting up across Emerging Europe, with headline inflation rates surging to multi-year highs in November. Producer price inflation has hit rates not seen in decades, food inflation continues to surge and strong wage growth is pushing up cyclical price pressures in Central Europe. Central banks, with the important exception of Turkey, are clearly focused on tackling inflation, continuing to hike interest rates despite the emergence of the Omicron variant. We think that inflation will stabilise in most countries in the coming months but it will take some time for headline rates to fall back to central banks’ targets, in some countries not until 2023. Against this backdrop, and amid growing signs of inflation expectations becoming unanchored, we expect interest rates to continue rising well into the new year.

20 December 2021

Emerging Europe Chart Book

Virus outbreaks diverge, but Omicron a renewed risk

COVID-19 outbreaks in Central and Eastern Europe have diverged in the past month and that may continue in December, but the emergence of the potentially highly-transmissible Omicron variant could replace Delta as the dominant strain and result in severe virus waves across the region. The recent experience is that there is a high bar for economically-damaging containment measures. But Omicron could change that if health systems come under increased strain, prompting a renewed downturn in activity. While our baseline view is that this won’t happen, renewed virus outbreaks – coming alongside other headwinds in the form of supply chain disruptions and surging inflation – means that the pace of growth is likely to slow sharply in the coming months.

30 November 2021

Emerging Europe Economic Outlook

Near-term recovery to face stronger headwinds

The region has experienced a rapid recovery, but the re-opening boost has now faded and the region is likely to face stronger headwinds in the near term due to surging COVID-19 cases, rising inflation and supply disruptions. Central European economies are vulnerable to shortages of key production inputs in the auto sector and low vaccine coverage countries such as Russia, Romania and Ukraine look most at risk of imposing tighter containment measures. Inflation is likely to remain stubbornly high over the coming months and central banks are likely to continue their front-loaded tightening cycles well into next year.

20 October 2021
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