LONDON (Reuters) - A tentative view that the global economy is emerging from its lull could harden into conventional wisdom by the end of this week if, as expected, data show the euro zone's lengthy recession has ended.
While Europe is still the world's biggest trading region, some of its recent major exports - financial market panic, banking scares and political uncertainty - have dragged on the world economy over the last three years.
There are now signs of a nascent recovery, led by Germany and perhaps Britain.
Wednesday's data are expected to show the euro zone economy grew 0.2 percent in the second quarter, according to a Reuters poll. That would mark an end to the recession that took hold in late 2011.
That won't change the U.S. position as the main engine of economic growth in the world, at least until next year, with Chinese growth still slowing and India wracked by a currency in free-fall.
But even the smallest sign of a recovery in Europe augurs well for the rest of the year.
"Add it all up, and it's a more positive picture for the global economy late this year and next," Mark Zandi, chief economist at Moody's Analytics, said.
"It feels like the global economy is stabilizing, and by year's end, certainly as we move into next year, growth will be accelerating, led by the U.S."
"But I also anticipate some growth out of Europe and stable growth out of the emerging world."
Business surveys last week supported that view as companies in the United States and Britain prospered, while there were signs Chinese firms might have passed the worst of their mid-year lull.
In the past, however, similar indications of global recovery have emerged, only for that recovery to be trampled.
Europe's major economies showed signs of improvement in early 2011, even while the sovereign debt crisis in the euro zone was worsening.
Two interest rate hikes from the European Central Bank midway through the year led to a chokehold on credit, especially in sout