Euro, rich-poor gap proved key issues at Davos

DAVOS, Switzerland (AP) -- Europe's crippling debt crisis dominated the world's foremost gathering of business and political leaders, but for the first time the growing inequality between the planet's haves and have-nots became an issue, thanks largely to the Arab Spring uprisings, the Occupy movement and other protests around the globe.The mood at the end of the five-day meeting in Davos was somber, and more than 2,500 VIPs headed home Sunday concerned about what lies ahead in 2012. Plenty of champagne flowed in this alpine ski resort - but the atmosphere was flat and the bubbling enthusiasm of some past World Economic Forums was noticeably absent.Despite some guarded optimism about Europe's latest attempts to stem the eurozone crisis, fears remain that turmoil could return and spill over to the rest of the world. And there were no answers to the widening inequality gap, but a mounting realization that economic growth must include the poor, that job creation is critical, and that affordable food, housing, health care and education need to part of any solution.Just before the forum began, the International Monetary Fund reduced its forecast for global growth in 2012 to 3.3 percent from the 4 percent pace it projected in September. Many other economic forecasters also predict a slowing economy, including New York University's Nouriel Roubini, who is widely acknowledged to have predicted the crash of 2008 and who said he might be \even slightly more bearish\ on the new IMF forecast.Asia is expected to remain the engine for global growth though at a slower rate, with China leading the way at more than 8 percent, followed by India and Indonesia.IMF Managing Director Christine Lagarde warned that the eurozone crisis is not the region's problem alone.\It's a crisis that could have collateral effects

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