Next time you ask an economist a question about the euro zone, be sure to enquire where their head office is based.
London? New York? Expect a pessimistic response on euro zone matters.
Frankfurt? Paris? Happier days are coming soon for the currency union.
So that’s oversimplifying matters slightly – but as we’ve seen time over, institutions based outside the euro zone are likely to be gloomier about its prospects, and those based inside it are more likely to look on the bright side.
That pattern was clear to see in this week’s Reuters poll on the euro zone’s vulnerable quartet – Greece, Ireland, Portugal and Spain.
While the overall consensus suggested next year promises gradual improvement next year for these economies, there was a clear split between non-euro zone and euro zone forecasters:
Average GDP 2014 forecasts (in percent), split between institutions based outside the euro zone, and those based inside: