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2005 OECD Economic Outlook, Volume 2005 Issue 2

image of OECD Economic Outlook, Volume 2005 Issue 2
Twice a year, the OECD Economic Outlook analyses the major trends and examines the economic policies required to foster high and sustainable growth in member countries. Developments in major non-OECD economies are also evaluated. The present issue covers the outlook to end-2007. Together with a wide range of cross-country statistics, the Outlook provides a unique tool to keep abreast of world economic developments.  In addition to the themes featured regularly, this issue contains an analytical chapter addressing the recent run-up in house prices.

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GDP is projected to grow almost 3% a year before abating somewhat in 2007. Recent house price increases are likely to sustain consumption growth into 2006. Starting with a slight negative output gap, economy-wide wage and price inflation is expected to gather pace towards 2007, with the construction sector already now beginning to show signs of overheating.

Monetary conditions, reinforced by new loan types on the mortgage market, are providing stimulus for the economy and this is likely to continue with short-term interest rates remaining stable in line with those of the European Central Bank. In this context, the sizeable extra revenues from North Sea oil exploration must be used to reduce public debt, with fiscal policy helping to contain aggregate demand. Measures to raise labour supply should also be considered.

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