The world's biggest economies will continue to struggle well into 2012, according to a poll of around 350 economists.
The study, carried out by Reuters, suggests that many economies will be faced with stagnation over the coming months, whilst others run a significant risk of dipping back into recession. The quarterly poll showed that many economists expect the weak growth that has defined the latter part of 2011 to continue into 2012.
According to the economists interviewed, the world economy will have grown by 3.8% in 2011, and is set to expand by just 3.6% next year. These figures are significantly lower than the forecasts from the last survey in July, which put growth at 4.1% for 2011 and 4.3% for 2012.
Speaking to Reuters, Peter Hooper, chief economist at Deutsche Bank Securities, explained the fragile state of the world economy. "Rarely has the economic outlook been so sensitive to the decisions of politicians on both sides of the Atlantic.
"Whether it is the complexities of reaching unanimous agreement among 17 euro area members regarding the resolution of the sovereign debt crisis, or the increasingly polarised US political scene, political risk may be the greatest source of shocks to the global economy today."