JPMorgan expects global growth in next 12-18 months to be ‘slow’ and ‘uninspiring’

Asia News

A general view shows residential and commercial buildings in the Kowloon district of Hong Kong.

Anthony Wallace | AFP | Getty Images

J.P. Morgan Asset Management is expecting global economic growth over the next 12-18 months to be “slow and somewhat uninspiring,” according to Tai Hui, its chief Asia market strategist.

“We can avoid the technical definition of a recession but it doesn’t feel like the world is growing very, very healthily,” Hui told CNBC’s “Street Signs” on Friday.

“I’d describe it as more like you know, coming to work on a Monday. You’re not quite sick, but you know, you’re not quite up to it. I think this is how the markets or investors gonna feel as they get into 2020,” he said.

Hui said the chances of a global recession next year — typically defined as “much weaker growth” than 2.5% to 3% global growth — was between 33% and 40%.

“If you think about what traditionally cause(s) a recession, whether it’s a tightening of credit condition or a significant spike in yields, some of these conditions are not there yet,” he said.

I think the overall environment is going to be very, very challenging to corporate sentiment.

Tai Hui

J.P. Morgan Asset Management

Trade uncertainty and global political issues are two factors contributing to the bleak global economic outlook, he said.

In addition to the U.S.-China trade fight that’s dragged on for more than a year, Hui pointed to the recent escalation in tensions between the U.S. and Europe.

Earlier this week, Washington said it will impose tariffs on European Union goods — from aircraft to whiskies, to coffee and cheese. It came after on $7.5 billion in European goods.

“I think the overall environment is going to be very, very challenging to corporate sentiment,” Hui said.

To exacerbate matters, he added there are currently “a whole bunch of political issues around the world,” ranging from protests in Hong Kong, uncertainty over Brexit as well as tensions in the Middle East.

“All of these are creating a lot of anxiety between CEOs and we’ve already seen corporate investment slowing down,” Hui said.

“The question is: Will they start to slow down on the hiring as well?,” he asked. “That could potentially move over to the consumer sector.”