Canada says G20 monitoring global economy

Wed Aug 3, 2011 3:36pm EDT
 
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By Claire Sibonney

TORONTO (Reuters) - Finance Minister Jim Flaherty said on Wednesday he has been having discussions with his Group of 20 colleagues about the global economic situation, which has been hit by U.S. and European debt fears.

"I've had discussions (with G20 colleagues) of course with what's been going on of late. We continue to monitor the situation and I'll leave it at that," he told Reuters on the sidelines of an event in Toronto.

The latest raft of disappointing economic data on Wednesday showed that growth in much of the world's service sector was anemic in July while the number of jobs created by the U.S. private sector also slowed.

As investors digested the recent gloomy reports, along with escalating debt woes in Italy and Spain and the possibility of a U.S. credit rating downgrade, most of the world's stock markets sold off for the second week running.

Since the global recession, Canada has emerged as the star of the Group of Seven economies thanks to its stable banking system and sound financials.

However, a further slowdown in global growth, particularly in the United States, Canada's largest trading partner, is seen as one of the biggest risk for the domestic economy.

(Reporting by Claire Sibonney; editing by Rob Wilson)