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Regional Specialists Review May 2014

The global recovery remains unsatisfyingly volatile, weaker than the norm and uneven from region to region...and satisfyingly stubborn. The U.S. is bouncing back from a brutal winter and near 0% growth. Japan has done OK, but questions remain about reform and her seemingly nationalistic leadership. The UK is close to booming conditions (at least by the standards of this recovery) and yet continental Europe is toying with deflation, and growth barely reaches 1%. And clarity for the future of emerging markets seems as elusive as ever.

So, just about normal for a global economy recovering from the excesses of credit bingeing.

Nothing is certain. But most of our causal factors, like monetary policy and even fiscal policy, continue to favor moving away from, rather than toward, an economic precipice. The private sector - both households and corporations - continues to heal globally, and even European peripheral borrowers and major European banks have gone a long way toward strengthening their balance sheets. And that's no small thing given where they started.

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