This 2016 Article IV Consultation highlights that the economic recovery in Austria has strengthened in 2016. GDP growth in 2016 is estimated at 1.4 percent, an improvement over the average growth of 0.6 percent in 2012–15. Growth has been broad-based, driven by private consumption supported by income tax cuts, a recovery in investment, and higher public consumption owing to spending on refugees. Employment growth has picked up as well. The outlook for 2017 appears similarly robust, while in the medium term growth would decline toward its potential rate, which IMF staff estimate at slightly higher than 1 percent. Risks to the outlook are mainly external, with limited likely impact overall.
This paper presents details of Austria’s 2013 Article IV Consultation. Austria has been growing economically but is facing challenges in the financial sector. Full implementation of medium-term fiscal adjustment plans require specifying several measures and plans that need gradual strengthening to take expected further bank restructuring cost into account. It suggests that strong early bank intervention and resolution tools, a better designed deposit insurance system, and a bank-financed resolution fund would help reduce the need for budgetary support to any troubled banks in the future.