Global macroeconomic risk began to shift in 2013 from the more mature economies of the United States, Western Europe and the Pacific Rim (OECD nations) to emerging markets, including most vital BRICS countries (Brazil, India, Russia, China, South Africa). The major advanced economies are stabilizing, even growing, while powerhouse BRICs nations are seeing their typically stellar growth rates continue to slow. In many cases, this lackluster growth is stemming from structural bottlenecks in infrastructure, labor markets and investment. Still, it should be noted that improving conditions in developed economies often can – and do – deliver knock-on benefits to emerging markets. In the United States, consumer confidence continues to strengthen, while the political climate seems to be improving with a recent budget deal. However, the Federal Reserve Bank is widely expected to taper off its “Quantitative Easing” program in 2014 – the impact of this on the global financial markets is unknown. At the same time, the euro zone region is expected to finally see some modest growth in 2014, as will Japan, which will continue its economic reforms under “Abenomics”. Overall, the global economy is expected to grow by 3.6 percent in 2014 and global trade is expected to grow by more than 5 percent – the strongest expansion since 2011.You must be a SIG member and logged in to view this document.