Global Woes Could Haunt U.S.


GKiplinger projects 2% economic growth for the United States in 2016. While not outstanding, there could be a sudden shift in the other direction if trouble occurs elsewhere. These are identified as the countries worth watching:

  • Venezuela: “Its economy is near collapse, as is its political system. If its oil flow stops, even for a short time, global prices will spike, putting pressure on major industrialized nations that need imports (including the U.S.) and likely shaking the confidence of investors.”
  • Brazil: “South America’s largest economy is in the second year of recession, its government is in disarray and its burgeoning middle class is being squeezed. A full meltdown isn’t likely but a less-than-spectacular Olympics and the spread of the Zika virus could unnerve trading partners and investors.”
  • Saudi Arabia: “Like others, the Saudis were stung by falling oil prices. But the big unknown is how the ruling family will respond if Washington decides that the kingdom can be held legally liable for the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks. One possible Saudi response: Selling off as much as $750 billion in U.S. Treasuries and other assets as a form of political retribution.”
  • China: “Slowing growth there causes ripples in everybody’s pond, threatening to slim trade in Europe, Asia and the Americas. China won’t be derailed, but its stumbles will keep global expansion muted.”

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