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Moderate Economic Growth – Unemployment Remaining High. Medium-term Forecast for the Austrian Economy Until 2021

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Listed:
  • Josef Baumgartner
  • Sandra Bilek-Steindl
  • Serguei Kaniovski
  • Hans Pitlik

Abstract

After the sluggish advance of 0.6 percent p.a. between 2012 and 2015, economic growth in Austria is expected to pick up to an annual rate of 1.5 percent over the period from 2017 to 2021. While firms may remain cautious in their investment behaviour and net exports contribute less to GDP growth than before the financial market crisis and the recession 2008-09, higher disposable incomes will push domestic private consumption growth to a rate of 1¼ percent p.a. (2012-2016 +0.3 percent p.a.). The stronger momentum of output growth will allow employment to expand by an average 1 percent p.a.; nevertheless, unemployment will keep rising, as supply of domestic and even more of foreign labour will outpace the creation of new jobs. By 2019-20, the jobless rate should reach a peak of 9.8 percent of the dependent labour force (national definition), before edging down to 9.7 percent by the end of the projection period. Inflation pressure stays low over the medium term, at an expected annual rate of 1¾ percent. The inflation differential vis-à-vis the euro area average is expected narrow noticeably. Given the business cycle profile and the economic policy assumptions underlying the projections, a balanced general government budget (headline deficit as well as in structural terms) may only be reached at the end of the forecast horizon. General government debt, as a ratio of nominal GDP, is set to decline from 2015 onwards by around 10 percentage points to 75¼ percent by 2021.

Suggested Citation

  • Josef Baumgartner & Sandra Bilek-Steindl & Serguei Kaniovski & Hans Pitlik, 2016. "Moderate Economic Growth – Unemployment Remaining High. Medium-term Forecast for the Austrian Economy Until 2021," WIFO Bulletin, WIFO, vol. 21(19), pages 185-201, December.
  • Handle: RePEc:wfo:wblltn:y:2016:i:19:p:185-201
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Keywords

    Medium-term forecast; Austria; Public Finance;

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