The New Growth Conundrum

PARIS – For most governments, the rate of economic growth that can reasonably be expected in the coming years is a key question. And, at least for the advanced economies, it has become a particularly puzzling one.

If the past is a good predictor of the future, the outlook is bleak. Since 2008, economic growth has consistently disappointed expectations. Of the countries most affected by the financial crisis, only a few – the United States, Germany, and Sweden – have rediscovered the path to sustained growth. Yet, even for them, GDP in 2013 was far below the level projected prior to the crisis.