OCTOBER spells autumn for the northern hemisphere and spring for the southern hemisphere.
More importantly, it is that time of the year when Washington DC is brisk with the annual meetings of the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank Group (except when the meetings are held outside the headquarters every three years), through which the latest world economic outlook will be released.
The meetings, which bring together central bankers, finance ministers as well as private sector captains and academics, will be hosted in Washington from October 11-13 and the tone looks to continue to be sombre and pensive as Europe and its other G3 partners, the United States and Japan, still struggle to regain their old selves.
European bailouts continue while the US continues to give out weak recovery signs. Have all that policy adjustments suggested by the fund helped economies jump-started their economies?
Research houses like Credit Suisse expect global growth in 2013 to be a touch lower than that in 2012 and has revised down its real gross domestic product (GDP) growth expectation slightly to 3.0 per cent from 3.1 per cent three months ago.
The research house seems more cheerful about 2014, saying the rebound in developed economies would support the global trend growth - while the spread between emerging markets and developed markets narrow to its smallest since 2002.
Emerging Asia may have had some good growth numbers but its debt level as a share of the GDP has also become a worrying concern.
As economist Frederic Neumann of HSBC Bank puts it, it's still a bit of mystery where all the debt (which is well above its peak in the run-up to the 1997 currency crisis) went.
While large Asian firms continue to be in good shape, having handled their balance sheets a lot more prudently compared with their non-listed parents, there are concerns about the household level and the performance of government-linked entities.
If IMF chief Christine Lagarde had confidently looked to the Asian region and emerging markets a year ago to mark her confidence vote, she may hesitate to do the same this time round.
That is, if the cautious outlook on the recession risks by the eighth G20 summit in St Petersburg earlier this month is a measure.
The Russians reminded the Americans that their economic growth activities are not as high as hoped for while the Japanese, in spite of having a fresh breath of renewed economic growth, do not seem convinced that they can sustain the growth level.
But the Americans have more on their plate today to worry about. Would the US government shutdown take place today as feared?
October 1 marks the first day in the US' fiscal year 2014 and the refusal by the Republicans in the House of Representatives to support spending points towards that. And, as the newswires put it, far-reaching consequences would be felt by all the federal departments and agencies dealing with matters ranging from Social Security cheques to admission at the national parks.
Thankfully, the US Federal Reserve's decision to refrain from cutting its monetary stimulus has lent some confidence to the Asian currencies like the ringgit. which rose by 2.5 per cent to RM3.1543 to the greenback, the most since the regional financial crisis.
But fears have not receded as there are renewed concerns that the Fed looks to scale back its stimulus based on the weak jobless claims.
October will be a busy month for Malaysia too, with the fiscal 2014 Budget set to be one of the most-watched events when Prime Minister and Finance Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak tables the document in Parliament on October 25.
Kuala Lumpur will also be bustling with the upcoming scheduled visits by the leaders of the No. 1 and No. 2 economies, namely President Barack Obama and President Xi Jinping, who will be making a stopover from the Apec summit in Bali.