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WTO warns of global trade slowdown as indicator hits nine-year low

A logo is pictured outside the World Trade Organization (WTO) headquarters next to a red traffic light in Geneva, Switzerland, October 2, 2018. Photograph:( Reuters )

Reuters Geneva, Switzerland Feb 19, 2019, 04.18 PM (IST)

A quarterly leading indicator of world merchandise trade slumped to its lowest reading in nine years on Tuesday, which should put policymakers on guard for a sharper slowdown if trade tensions continue, the World Trade Organization said on Tuesday.

The WTO's quarterly outlook indicator, a composite of seven drivers of trade, showed a reading of 96.3, the weakest since March 2010 and down from 98.6 in November. A reading below 100 signals below-trend growth in trade.

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The WTO's quarterly outlook indicator, a composite of seven drivers of trade, showed a reading of 96.3, the weakest since March 2010.