Both emerging markets and the U.S. appear poised to recover from last year's economic stumbles, but problems persist for Europe, according to the head of global financial giant UBS.
The continent is predicted to only achieve a slow rebound, Axel Weber, chairman of the Swiss investment bank, told CNBC's Joumanna Bercetche in Washington D.C. on Thursday.
"We're a bit skeptical about the ability of Europe to use stimulus to come out of this," he said. "I think there is some downside risk in Europe and you have to acknowledge that. So, whilst I do have the main outlook to be a sort of L-shaped recovery, stabilization at a lower level, growth below potential, I don't have the main scenario of a recession."
The International Monetary Fund recently downgraded growth in the euro zone. It now expects the bloc to grow at 1.3 percent in 2019 — lower than its forecast had been six months ago.
In many European countries, including Italy and France, there's very little room for governments to use fiscal policy to stimulate the economy, Weber said. That's because their fiscal deficits are near the upper limit of the 3 percent of GDP that the European Central Bank allows. Only Germany has room for additional fiscal measures, but Berlin will only use it to boost the domestic economy, the UBS chief said.
On the monetary policy front, the ECB has pumped trillions of euros into the economy over the past few years to boost inflation and promote growth. Earlier this week, the ECB held interest rates steady.
"What you have to ask yourself is: After years of quantitative easing, is adding more of the same really going to have the same impact on the economy that it did have when they started this? My answer to that is, probably not," Weber said.