Strong recovery, but inflation a lasting concern

Rapid recoveries are underway across the region and GDP should return close to its pre-pandemic path sooner than in most other EM regions. While the spread of highly transmissible virus strains poses the greatest threat to the near-term outlook, high vaccine coverage means that we do not think it will derail the recovery. The economic rebound is likely to use up spare capacity quickly and keep inflation pressures stronger than in other parts of the EM world. Further interest rate hikes lie in store in Russia, Czechia and Hungary in the coming months, with Poland set to join next year.
William Jackson Chief Emerging Markets Economist
Continue reading

More from Emerging Europe

Emerging Europe Data Response

Poland Activity Data (Dec.)

The latest activity data in Poland show that industry expanded strongly in Q4 but that the shine came off the retail sector amid falling consumer sentiment and surging inflation. We think that GDP expanded by around 6.8% y/y (1.1% q/q) in Q4 which would leave Poland as the best performing economy in the region, but that the recovery will slow a touch at the start of this year.

24 January 2022

Emerging Europe Economics Weekly

Ukrainian markets feel the heat, oil nearing $90pb

Ukraine's financial markets remained under pressure this week as investors appear to have priced in a more serious outcome regarding Russia-Ukraine tensions. A positive reaction to today's talks between the US and Russia has brought some relief but, even if a renewed conflict doesn't materialise, local markets are set to face a difficult few months. Meanwhile, oil prices closed in on $90pb this week and we've revised up our year-end Brent crude forecast to $70pb (from $60pb). This will help support Russia's budget and current account surpluses, but will add 0.2-0.3%-pts to inflation elsewhere in the region and cause current account balances to worsen.

21 January 2022

Emerging Europe Economic Outlook

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.

20 January 2022

More from William Jackson

Emerging Markets Economics Update

A closer look at the Delta variant’s threat to recoveries

The spread of the Delta variant of COVID-19 poses a much bigger risk to economic recoveries in emerging markets than in developed markets. India, South Africa, and South East Asia have suffered already or are suffering. And limited vaccine coverage in much of Latin America, other parts of Asia and Africa mean that the threat of future outbreaks will persist. That adds to reasons to expect that GDP will return to its pre-crisis path more slowly than elsewhere.

20 July 2021

Latin America Economic Outlook

Not all doom and gloom

Virus outbreaks are easing in much of Latin America which should support activity in the near term. And while vaccination coverage is still weak in most of the region, suggesting there is still a clear risk of further virus waves, economies are becoming increasingly resilient on this front. We think that the pace of the regional recovery will beat most analysts’ expectations in the coming years. Further monetary tightening lies in store but, with headline inflation rates set to drop back in 2022, interest rates probably won’t rise as far as investors are currently pricing into financial markets. Meanwhile, political risks are likely to grow over the coming year, raising debt concerns and putting local financial assets under pressure.

19 July 2021

Latin America Economics Weekly

Brazil’s tax reform, Chilean primary elections

Proposed changes to Brazil’s income tax setup, which aim to cut corporate tax but only partly offset that with an end to exemptions and the introduction of a levy on dividends, add to the view that fiscal risks will resurface. Elsewhere, on Sunday there will be primary elections in Chile to decide the presidential nominees for the left-wing Apruebo Dignidad and centre-right Chile Vamos coalitions. While there is still a lot of uncertainty at this stage, one common theme is that there seems to be broad political support for keeping fiscal policy loose.

16 July 2021
↑ Back to top