WASHINGTON, Sept. 20 (Xinhua) -- The U.S. economy will grow only 1.5 percent in 2011, significantly slower than expected, according to a report released by the International Monetary Fund (IMF) on Tuesday.
"The U.S. economy is struggling to gain a strong foothold, with sluggish growth and a protracted job recovery," said the IMF in its latest World Economic Outlook (WEO) report.
Downside risks weigh on the outlook given fiscal uncertainty, weakness in the housing market and household finances, renewed financial stress, and subdued consumer and business sentiment, said the Washington-based international institution ahead of its annual meetings to be held later this week.
The IMF also projected that the world's largest economy will grow 1.8 percent in 2012.
In its June projections, the Fund expected the U.S. economy to increase 2.5 percent and 2.7 percent in 2011 and 2012 respectively.