Foreword

This is the second edition of the OECD Business and Finance Outlook, an annual publication that presents unique data and analysis that looks at what might affect and change, both favourably and unfavourably, tomorrow’s world of business, finance and investment. This year’s edition focuses on “doing business in a fragmented world”. Using analysis from a wide range of perspectives, the report addresses past over-investment in certain industrial sectors, the reversal of the commodity supercycle and the implications of low interest rates for corporate and institutional investors. It provides a new look at large observed differences in productivity performance across firms and at the profitability of clean energy projects. Different aspects of the business environment are addressed, including fiscal incentives for R&D innovation; foreign bribery regimes; and investment treaties. The publication also analyses life expectancy around retirement age across different socio-economic groups and its implications for both social justice and the sustainability of pension systems.

The Outlook is complemented by a sister publication, the OECD Business and Finance Scoreboard 2016. The Scoreboard contains indicators and data that support analysis of developments in the financial markets and corporate sector.

The 2016 OECD Business and Finance Outlook is the joint work of staff of the OECD Directorate for Financial and Enterprise Affairs. It has benefited from contributions from national government delegates and other parts of the OECD Secretariat. Chapter 3 was co-authored by staff of the OECD Centre for Tax Policy and Administration and the OECD Directorate for Science, Technology and Innovation.