The IMF Working Papers series is designed to make IMF staff research available to a wide audience. Almost 300 Working Papers are released each year, covering a wide range of theoretical and analytical topics, including balance of payments, monetary and fiscal issues, global liquidity, and national and international economic developments.
Much of the debate about the management of financial crises has focused on structural and psychological issues regarding the conditions that are supposed to be necessary to restore investor confidence. Nonetheless, the paramount requirement in the short term is for countries in crisis to adopt correct macroeconomic policies. An analysis of conventional macroeconomic models reveals that countries can afford to run expansionary policies to restore internal balance only if they can afford to ignore the requirements for external balance. This arithmetic does not depend on whether macroeconomic policies were inappropriate before the crisis hit.