London — Storm clouds were building over the global economy, even before the brutal sell-off in stock markets over the last 24 hours. Escalating oil prices, rising interest rates, an appreciating dollar and growing uncertainty about the outlook for international trade are proving a poisonous cocktail for global growth and have been triggered crises in the past. Economic growth and corporate earnings have remained strong in the US but in much of the rest of the world momentum has been slackening since the start of 2018. Strong and synchronised growth in 2017 has been replaced by an unbalanced expansion that increasingly relies on US consumers and businesses to be sustained. • The OECD's composite leading indicator points to a progressive loss of momentum in the advanced economies since the start of 2018 and is now at the lowest level since 2016. • World trade growth peaked in the three months to January at 5.2% year-on-year but slowed to 3.8% in the three months to July, according to...

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