Overview: moderate gross domestic product growth of approximately 3 percent
We expect global economic growth to remain moderate in 2014. Based on figures published by Feri EuroRating Services, we expect gross domestic product to increase by approximately 3 percent.
We expect the mature markets to grow by approximately 2 percent. The North American economy is likely to grow by around 3 percent, with Japan’s expanding by around 2 percent. We expect economic growth in Western Europe of around 1 percent.
The emerging markets will once again achieve comparatively strong economic growth of around 4 percent in 2014. In the case of Asia (excluding Japan), we expect economic output to increase by around 6 percent, with Latin America likely posting a plus of approximately 3 percent. Eastern Europe should grow by approximately 2 percent. For the Africa/Middle East region, we expect economic growth of approximately 4 percent.
Direct materials: moderate rise in price level
We anticipate moderate price increases for direct materials in 2014. In light of the geopolitical and global economic situation, we expect the procurement markets to remain highly volatile. Limited capacities in some supply areas may lead to shortages.
Currencies: moderate devaluation against the euro
Overall, we anticipate a moderate devaluation versus the euro for Henkel’s most important currencies arising from the expected development of major currencies in the emerging markets. On the other hand, we do not expect any material change in the euro exchange rate versus the US dollar, and anticipate an annual average for 2014 of around 1.32 US dollars per euro.
Inflation: moderate rise in global price levels
According to data provided by Feri EuroRating Services, global inflation is predicted to be approximately 3.5 percent in 2014. While we can continue to expect a high degree of price stability for the mature markets with a rise of approximately 2 percent, the inflation rate in the emerging regions is likely to average around 6 percent.