Jan. 23, 2018 marked the first day of the latest annual World Economic Forum, taking place in Davos, Switzerland, and scheduled to run through Jan. 26. Bloomberg reported that early conversations were highlighted by discussion of how well the various economies of the European Union have performed recently.
During 2017, economic growth throughout the eurozone reached greater heights than anything the region had experienced in a decade. This starkly contrasted with the strife characterizing the past several years, which stemmed from incidents like the U.K.'s Brexit referendum and sociopolitical upheaval in many other EU nations.
Some concerns about the EU's future did surface during Davos discussions. These centered around the upcoming retirement of European Central Bank President Mario Draghi - widely credited for the shrewd strategies that strengthened the eurozone's employment and currency - as well as general fear of political upheaval stemming from a murky recent history.
Nevertheless, remarks from David Rubenstein, co-founder of the Carlyle Group multinational conglomerate, characterized the general feeling of optimism regarding the EU's economic future.
"Despite Brexit, the problems in Spain, the weakened German government, [and] a new French government, Europe has done quite well economically," Rubenstein said, according to Bloomberg. "It's a very attractive place to invest."
CNNMoney recently cited several metrics offering concrete backup for the feelings of optimism expressed at Davos regarding the eurozone economy.
For example, the European Commission reported in a Jan. 8 survey that economic confidence throughout the EU is higher than it's been in more than 17 years. Also, according to the preliminary results of a study by Capital Economics, the EU benefited from economic growth of 2.4 percent in 2017. While Capital has yet to release its finalized data, if existing figures hold, that growth outpaces the 2.3 percent the U.S. experienced in the same year.