IMF says "cautious optimism" may be justified on global economy

WASHINGTON Wed Jan 23, 2013 10:28am EST

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WASHINGTON Jan 23 (Reuters) - The biggest risks facing the global economy last year have been dodged and "cautious optimism" on the outlook may be warranted, the IMF's chief economist said on Wednesday.

"Optimism is in the air, particularly in financial markets, and some cautious optimism may indeed be justified," International Monetary Fund chief economist Olivier Blanchard said.

"Comparing to where we were at the same time last year, acute risks have decreased," he told a news conference, referring to the "fiscal cliff" in the United States and the threat posed by Europe's debt crisis.

"We may have avoided the cliffs, but we still face high mountains," Blanchard said.

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