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Slideshow: Apocalypse How? Dire ’12 Forecasts

By Ben Steverman - 2012-01-14T03:12:30Z

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Stephen Roach

The non-executive chairman of Morgan Stanley Asia, Stephen Roach, expects U.S. consumer spending to remain weak "for years to come," hurting global economic growth. "With balance-sheet repair only in its early stages and the personal saving rate (at 3.5 percent) still decidedly subpar, the zombie-like behavior of American consumers should persist," Roach said in a Jan. 12 email. He's not as gloomy on China. "All this China crisis talk is really overblown," he told CNBC in late December. He's more worried about India's economy, he said, noting that it's the only economy in Asia with "a big budget deficit, which limits their ability to use monetary or fiscal policy."

(Left, Indian laborers erect a temporary structure for a trade fair in Mumbai.)

Photograph by Divyakant Solanki/EPA/Corbis