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In mid-October, EMsights team members traveled to Washington D.C. to attend meetings around the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the World Bank Group annual meetings. Given that uncertainty permeates the macro backdrop, it came as no surprise that the meetings held a somber tone. Given Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, Fed tightening and the global inflationary environment in general, uncertainty and bearishness abound. Ultimately, the IMF opted to lower its global economic growth outlook for 2023 to 2.7%, down 0.2 percentage points from its most recent outlook in July, and lower than its projection for 3.2% growth in 2022.
The convergence of rising interest rates, high inflation and slowing growth have roiled global financial markets, including emerging markets (EM) debt. The Federal Reserve’s rate hikes are taking place against the backdrop of tightening by many central banks in developed and emerging markets. We believe these factors are fueling risk-off sentiment for EM fixed income assets.