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Swiss growth outlook cut

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Swiss growth outlook cut
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The Swiss government has downgraded its economic outlook for this year and next.

The government’s panel of experts cut their growth forecast to 1.0 percent this year down from their previous 1.4 percent estimate.

Growth next year is predicted to be 1.4 percent rather than 1.5.

They cited signs of a worldwide economic slowdown even as stresses in the eurozone have eased thanks to the European Central Bank’s bond buying scheme.

The Swiss National Bank last week cut its growth and inflation forecasts.

The SNB also gave little sign of any faith that the eurozone’s debt crisis had eased enough to let its franc currency float freely again against the euro.

After its quarterly policy meeting, the bank said the Swiss economy would now grow just 1.0 percent this year – versus a previous 1.5 percent forecast – and saw consumer prices falling 0.6 percent this year, slightly more than earlier thought.

It reiterated its determination to defend a 1.20 per euro minimum exchange rate for the Swiss franc and take further measures if necessary, saying it would not allow the franc to strengthen given the serious impact this would have on prices and growth.