In an annual New York event, Prudential brings together some of its smartest leaders to help educate the press on its annual outlook for the markets and the economy.

The good-news consensus for 2013 at Tuesday’s gathering? An improving worldwide economy, helped by higher housing prices in the U.S., a likely increase in corporate earnings, lower gas prices, the lack of a hard landing in China and sustained growth in many emerging markets, greater stabilization in Europe and continued actions by the world’s central banks. “My guess is that the worst of the financial crisis is behind us,” said speaker Ed Keon, managing director for Quantitative Management Associates.

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