The macroeconomic framework

In 2013, the world economy grew by approximately 3%, with dynamics differing by geographic segment, against a background of reduced inflation in western countries and commodity prices that were basically stable.
In East Asia, the objective of establishing a social/geographic balance and of regulating monetary aggregates led to a slowdown in major growth rates, while in the US, the consolidation in growth was partially limited by programmes to reduce the federal deficit, despite a huge monetary expansion.
Japan stands alone, consolidating growth thanks to a considerable public deficit, an inflationary monetary policy and the depreciation of the yen.
The Eurozone confirmed a slight overall downturn, despite a positive performance in the last quarter, reflecting a slow process of some peripheral countries overcoming the crisis.
As regards Italy, GDP fell for the second year running: drastic recovery measures had a considerable impact on consumer trends and employment, confirming the need for structural reforms.