Chart of the week: are forecasters being too bullish again?

There are happy days ahead for the world economy, if forecasters are to be believed. But analysts have a terrible forecasting record.

945_COTW

There are happy days ahead for the world economy, if forecasts from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) are to be believed. This chart from Deutsche Bank suggests that the number of countries in recession, which soared to nearly 100 during the global financial crisis, is set to decline to record lows over the next few years.

The world's leading economy, the US, looks in solid shape now that data has improved and the central bank has opted to keep interest rates on hold, according to Deutsche Bank's Torsten Slok. "We do not see a recession in the next three years."

Encouraging as this sounds, it is worth remembering that analysts en masse have a terrible forecasting record, with the global crisis of 2009 among their many misses.

Viewpoint

Spencer Jakab, The Wall Street Journal

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