Front Matter

Front Matter

International Monetary Fund. Research Dept.
Published Date:
October 2015
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World Economic and Financial Surveys

Economic and Financial Surveys

World Economic Outlook

October 2015

Adjusting to Lower Commodity Prices

©2015 International Monetary Fund

Cover and Design: Luisa Menjivar and Jorge Salazar

Composition: AGS

Cataloging-in-Publication Data

Joint Bank-Fund Library

World economic outlook (International Monetary Fund)

World economic outlook: a survey by the staff of the International Monetary Fund.—Washington, DC: International Monetary Fund, 1980–

v. ; 28 cm.—(1981–1984: Occasional paper / International Monetary Fund, 0251-6365).—(1986–: World economic and financial surveys, 0256-6877)

Semiannual. Some issues also have thematic titles.

Has occasional updates, 1984–

ISSN (print) 0256-6877

ISSN (online) 1564-5215

1. Economic development—Periodicals. 2. Economic forecasting—Periodicals. 3. Economic policy—Periodicals. 4. International economic relations—Periodicals. I. International Monetary Fund. II. Series: Occasional paper (International Monetary Fund). III. Series: World economic and financial surveys.


ISBN 978-1-51352-073-5 (paper)

978-1-51355-261-3 (PDF)

978-1-51351-539-7 (ePub)

978-1-51357-489-9 (Mobi)

The World Economic Outlook (WEO) is a survey by the IMF staff published twice a year, in the spring and fall. The WEO is prepared by the IMF staff and has benefited from comments and suggestions by Executive Directors following their discussion of the report on September 21, 2015. The views expressed in this publication are those of the IMF staff and do not necessarily represent the views of the IMF’s Executive Directors or their national authorities.

Recommended citation: International Monetary Fund. 2015. World Economic Outlook: Adjusting to Lower Commodity Prices. Washington (October).

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Editor’s notes:

(October 1, 2015)

Note 44 on page 122 has been amended to correct the start date of the period covered from January 2012 to January 2013.

(October 7, 2015)

The final sentence of the second full bullet on page 4 has been amended. The final clause has been changed from “reflecting slower U.S. growth but also lackluster domestic demand” to read “reflecting slower U.S. growth and a drop in oil production.”

The fifth sentence of the final bullet in the first column of page 15 has been amended. The final clause has been changed from “with significant negative spillovers onto growth in large parts of the region given the size and interconnectedness of the Brazilian economy” to read instead “with negative spillovers on other parts of the region, especially Brazil’s trading partners in Mercosur.”

(October 13, 2015)

The last three sentences of the first full paragraph on page 21 have been replaced. The original text of these sentences read as follows:

Simulations using the IMF’s Global Projection Model, which draw on past shocks over a longer horizon, suggest a small decrease in the probability of a recession in the major advanced economies over a four-quarter horizon relative to April 2015 (Figure 1.15, panel 1). However, the risk of a recession is now higher in the Latin America 5 and the “rest of the world” group. This increase, which highlights the higher emerging market economy risks noted earlier in the chapter, reflects lower starting values for growth, given weaker growth in the second quarter of 2015 for these economies as a group and weaker near-term forecasts.

The amended text reads as follows:

Simulations using the IMF’s Global Projection Model, which draw on past shocks over a longer horizon, suggest a small increase in the probability of a recession in the major advanced economies and in the Latin America 5 economies over a four-quarter horizon relative to April 2015 (Figure 1.15, panel 1). This increase primarily reflects the lower starting values for growth for some of the economies and the somewhat lower growth forecast under the baseline. With the latter, the probability of negative shocks leading to a technical recession is higher compared to a situation in which the baseline forecast is stronger.

Assumptions and Conventions

A number of assumptions have been adopted for the projections presented in the World Economic Outlook (WEO). It has been assumed that real effective exchange rates remained constant at their average levels during July 27–August 24, 2015, except for those for the currencies participating in the European exchange rate mechanism II (ERM II), which are assumed to have remained constant in nominal terms relative to the euro; that established policies of national authorities will be maintained (for specific assumptions about fiscal and monetary policies for selected economies, see Box A1 in the Statistical Appendix); that the average price of oil will be $51.62 a barrel in 2015 and $50.36 a barrel in 2016 and will remain unchanged in real terms over the medium term; that the six-month London interbank offered rate (LIBOR) on U.S. dollar deposits will average 0.4 percent in 2015 and 1.2 percent in 2016; that the three-month euro deposit rate will average 0.0 percent in 2015 and 2016; and that the six-month Japanese yen deposit rate will yield on average 0.1 percent in 2015 and 2016. These are, of course, working hypotheses rather than forecasts, and the uncertainties surrounding them add to the margin of error that would in any event be involved in the projections. The estimates and projections are based on statistical information available through September 16, 2015.

The following conventions are used throughout the WEO:

… to indicate that data are not available or not applicable;

—between years or months (for example, 2014–15 or January–June) to indicate the years or months covered, including the beginning and ending years or months;

/ between years or months (for example, 2014/15) to indicate a fiscal or financial year.

“Billion” means a thousand million; “trillion” means a thousand billion.

“Basis points” refers to hundredths of 1 percentage point (for example, 25 basis points are equivalent to ¼ of 1 percentage point).

Data refer to calendar years, except in the case of a few countries that use fiscal years. Please refer to Table F in the Statistical Appendix, which lists the economies with exceptional reporting periods for national accounts and government finance data for each country.

For some countries, the figures for 2014 and earlier are based on estimates rather than actual outturns. Please refer to Table G in the Statistical Appendix, which lists the latest actual outturns for the indicators in the national accounts, prices, government finance, and balance of payments indicators for each country.

  • Data for Lithuania are now included in the euro area aggregates, but they were excluded in the April 2015 WEO.
  • Projections for Greece are based on data available as of August 12, 2015.
  • As in the April 2015 WEO, data for Syria are excluded from 2011 onward because of the ongoing conflict and the related lack of data.In the tables and figures, the following conventions apply:
  • If no source is listed on tables and figures, data are drawn from the WEO database.
  • When countries are not listed alphabetically, they are ordered on the basis of economic size.
  • Minor discrepancies between sums of constituent figures and totals shown reflect rounding.

As used in this report, the terms “country” and “economy” do not in all cases refer to a territorial entity that is a state as understood by international law and practice. As used here, the term also covers some territorial entities that are not states but for which statistical data are maintained on a separate and independent basis.

Composite data are provided for various groups of countries organized according to economic characteristics or region. Unless noted otherwise, country group composites represent calculations based on 90 percent or more of the weighted group data.

The boundaries, colors, denominations, and any other information shown on the maps do not imply, on the part of the International Monetary Fund, any judgment on the legal status of any territory or any endorsement or acceptance of such boundaries.

Further Information and Data

This version of the World Economic Outlook (WEO) is available in full through the IMF eLibrary ( and the IMF website ( Accompanying the publication on the IMF website is a larger compilation of data from the WEO database than is included in the report itself, including files containing the series most frequently requested by readers. These files may be downloaded for use in a variety of software packages.

The data appearing in the World Economic Outlook are compiled by the IMF staff at the time of the WEO exercises. The historical data and projections are based on the information gathered by the IMF country desk officers in the context of their missions to IMF member countries and through their ongoing analysis of the evolving situation in each country. Historical data are updated on a continual basis as more information becomes available, and structural breaks in data are often adjusted to produce smooth series with the use of splicing and other techniques. IMF staff estimates continue to serve as proxies for historical series when complete information is unavailable. As a result, WEO data can differ from those in other sources with official data, including the IMF’s International Financial Statistics.

The WEO data and metadata provided are “as is” and “as available,” and every effort is made to ensure their timeliness, accuracy, and completeness, but it cannot be guaranteed. When errors are discovered, there is a concerted effort to correct them as appropriate and feasible. Corrections and revisions made after publication are incorporated into the electronic editions available from the IMF eLibrary ( and on the IMF website ( All substantive changes are listed in detail in the online tables of contents.

For details on the terms and conditions for usage of the WEO database, please refer to the IMF Copyright and Usage website (

Inquiries about the content of the World Economic Outlook and the WEO database should be sent by mail, fax, or online forum (telephone inquiries cannot be accepted):

World Economic Studies Division

Research Department

International Monetary Fund

700 19th Street, N.W.

Washington, DC 20431, U.S.A.

Fax: (202) 623-6343

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The analysis and projections contained in the World Economic Outlook are integral elements of the IMF’s surveillance of economic developments and policies in its member countries, of developments in international financial markets, and of the global economic system. The survey of prospects and policies is the product of a comprehensive interdepartmental review of world economic developments, which draws primarily on information the IMF staff gathers through its consultations with member countries. These consultations are carried out in particular by the IMF’s area departments—namely, the African Department, Asia and Pacific Department, European Department, Middle East and Central Asia Department, and Western Hemisphere Department—together with the Strategy, Policy, and Review Department, the Monetary and Capital Markets Department, and the Fiscal Affairs Department.

The analysis in this report was coordinated in the Research Department under the general direction of Olivier Blanchard, Economic Counsellor and Director of Research. The project was directed by Gian Maria Milesi-Ferretti, Deputy Director, Research Department, and Thomas Helbling, Division Chief, Research Department.

The primary contributors to this report were Aqib Aslam, Samya Beidas-Strom, Rudolfs Bems, Oya Celasun, Sinem Kılıç Çelik, Zsóka Kóczán, Daniel Leigh, Weicheng Lian, Marcos Poplawski-Ribeiro, and Viktor Tsyrennikov.

Other contributors include Rabah Arezki, Eugenio Cerutti, Kevin Cheng, Filippo Gori, Bertrand Gruss, Ben Hunt, Joong Shik Kang, Douglas Laxton, Bin Grace Li, Nan Li, Akito Matsumoto, Susanna Mursula, Carolina Osorio-Buitrón, Andrea Presbitero, Frederik Toscani, Rachel van Elkan, Hou Wang, Fan Zhang, and Hongyan Zhao.

Gavin Asdorian, Vanessa Diaz Montelongo, Rachel Fan, Hao Jiang, Christina Liu, Olivia Ma, Rachel Szymanski, and Hong Yang provided research assistance. Angela Espiritu, Mitko Grigorov, Mahnaz Hemmati, Toh Kuan, Trevor Meadows, Emory Oakes, Nicholas Tong, Richard Watson, Jilun Xing, and Yuan Zeng provided technical support. Alimata Kini Kaboré and Maria Jovanović were responsible for word processing. Michael Harrup from the Communications Department led the editorial team and managed the report’s production, with support from Linda Griffin Kean and Joe Procopio and editorial assistance from Lucy Scott Morales, Linda Long, Sherrie Brown, Gregg Forte, Nancy Morrison, and EEI Communications.

The analysis has benefited from comments and suggestions by staff members from other IMF departments, as well as by Executive Directors following their discussion of the report on September 21, 2015. However, both projections and policy considerations are those of the IMF staff and should not be attributed to Executive Directors or to their national authorities.

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