LONDON - Global growth is set to blossom this year on the back of resurgent Asian economies and as the world's richest nations emerge from the deepest recession since the Second World War, according to a Reuters poll.
Median forecasts from 45 analysts from across North America, Europe and Japan polled over the past week show they expect the global economy to grow by 3.6 percent this year after an expected 1.0 percent contraction in 2009.
They then see global growth of 4.0 percent in 2011. These most recent forecasts are robust upgrades from July predictions for a 2009 contraction of 1.5 percent and growth this year of just 2.5 percent.
There was a big success last year from the coordinated action taken by the central banks and the fiscal authorities around the world. They prevented the downturn from being even worse and it's kickstarted the recovery, said Trevor Williams at Lloyds TSB.
Emerging markets are leading the global recovery -- no question. The growth in the established economies is substantially below, Williams said.
Central banks have slashed interest rates to near zero and pumped billions of dollars into fragile economies as they try to drag them from the deepest recession in living memory, and their plans seem to have paid off.
International Monetary Fund head Dominique Strauss-Kahn said on Wednesday that global growth was recovering more strongly than expected and was likely to be expand faster this year than the organisation's 3 percent prediction as Asian economies lead the way.
Asian central banks are seen raising rates by September as growth in most economies, notably China, picks up faster than predicted only three months ago as exports regain strength.
The 16-nation euro zone is expected to grow by 1.2 percent this year, Germany by 1.5 percent and Britain by 1.2 percent, while the United States, the world's biggest economy is seen growing 2.7 percent.
But these figures pale in comparison to the predicted growth of 9.5 percent in China this year, 8 percent in India and almost 6 percent in Indonesia.
The manufacturing sector has been at the forefront of a recovery from a deep financial crisis that began in the United States on the back of unsound home loans that were repackaged and sold on.
The early signs that manufacturing is turning is a sign that at least the worst historically is over. On the whole, you can point to manufacturing as a signal, said Stuart Bennett at Calyon.
Global factory business activity grew at its fastest pace in nearly four years in December as new orders raced ahead, according to Global PMI figures released earlier this month.
And global trade volumes rebounded 9 percent in the nine months to October 2009, with the fastest gains in Asia and emerging markets, according to the Netherlands Central Planning Bureau, which compiles a widely-watched indicator of world trade growth.
This followed a contraction of 20 percent in trade volumes in the second half of 2008, which prompted companies to slash inventory levels but firms have since slowed the pace of inventory reduction and should begin to rebuild them in the months ahead.
(Polling by Bangalore Polling Unit; Editing by Andy Bruce)
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