SAN GABRIEL, CA – “Economic growth in Asia-Pacific will slow as part of global growth cooldown,” said Bank of the West Chief Economist Scott Anderson at the 24th annual Pacific Rim Client Appreciation Dinner on Dec. 12, held at the Sheraton Los Angeles San Gabriel Hotel.
Anderson, along with Yukinori Nishio, EVP and Head of the Bank’s Pacific Rim Banking Division; Michelle Di Gangi, EVP and Head of Small and Medium Enterprise Banking; and Ryan Bailey, EVP and Head of the Retail Banking Group, also participated in a press event prior to the annual dinner.
At both the dinner and press briefing, Anderson presented an exclusive 2019 economic outlook for the Pacific Rim customers and Nishio provided an overview of the state of Bank of the West’s Pacific Rim business over the last year, including its commitment to customers through representative offices in Tokyo and Taipei, respectively.
“Economic growth across the Asia-Pacific region will continue in 2019, but is expected to slow amid a global economic downturn,” said Anderson. Emphasizing its decades-long commitment to the Pacific Rim market, more than 400 Pacific Rim clients, many of whom are Asian immigrants and Asian-American entrepreneurs, heard from Bank of the West executives about the Bank’s commitment to making a positive impact on the communities it serves.
“Global growth is slowing and we are in the late stages of a cyclical expansion,” added Anderson. “Asia, particularly the most developed countries in the region, will continue to grow faster compared to other regions across the world, but we are seeing signs that the period of strongest growth is over.”
In the United States, he expects “the U.S. Federal Reserve will raise interest rates twice throughout 2019, but pause further rate increases as the domestic economy cools.” With U.S. job growth slowing, he estimates the U.S. unemployment rate will rise by the end of 2019 after reaching record lows earlier in the year. He also projects domestic Chinese GDP growth in 2019 “will lag that of other developing Asian countries.” For more of Anderson’s economic analysis, follow him on LinkedIn or at the Bank of the West Blog for weekly updates.
“Bank of the West wants to positively support our communities and our customers, whether their needs are local or global in nature,” expressed Nishio. “We are honored our customers see Bank of the West as the bank that is best positioned to help meet the challenges they face in an evolving world.”
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