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  • Agriculture: Aggregate Supply and Demand Analysis; Prices x
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Mr. Nooman Rebei and Rashid Sbia
This paper documents the determinants of real oil price in the global market based on SVAR model embedding transitory and permanent shocks on oil demand and supply as well as speculative disturbances. We find evidence of significant differences in the propagation mechanisms of transitory versus permanent shocks, pointing to the importance of disentangling their distinct effects. Permanent supply disruptions turn out to be a bigger factor in historical oil price movements during the most recent decades, while speculative shocks became less influential.
Anh D. M. Nguyen, Mr. Jemma Dridi, Ms. Filiz D Unsal, and Mr. Oral Williams
The perception that inflation dynamics in Sub-Saharan Africa (SSA) are driven by supply shocks implies a limited role for monetary policy in influencing inflation in the short run. SSA’s rapid growth, its integration with the global economy, changes in the policy frameworks, among others, in the last decade suggest that the drivers of inflation may have changed. We quantitatively analyze inflation dynamics in SSA using a Global VAR model, which incorporates trade and financial linkages among economies, as well as the role of regional and global demand and inflationary spillovers. We find that in the past 25 years, the main drivers of inflation have been domestic supply shocks and shocks to exchange rate and monetary variables; but that, in recent years, the contribution of these shocks to inflation has fallen. Domestic demand pressures as well as global shocks, and particularly shocks to output, however, have played a larger role in driving inflation over the last decade. We also show that country characteristics matter—the extent of oil and food imports, vulnerability to weather shocks, economic importance of agriculture, trade openness and policy regime, among others, help in explaining the role of shocks.
International Monetary Fund. African Dept.

Abstract

La reprise est bien engagée en Afrique subsaharienne, mais on constate des variations de rythme entre groupes de pays. La plupart des pays à faible revenu et des pays exportateurs de pétrole ont presque retrouvé leur taux de croissance d'avant la crise. Par contre, le redressement se fait plus progressivement dans les pays à revenu intermédiaire de la région, dont l'Afrique du Sud. Cette édition des Perspectives économiques régionales décrit les incidences de l'évolution économique récente : les fortes hausses des cours des denrées alimentaires et du pétrole nécessiteront des interventions budgétaires en faveur des pauvres, tandis que l'augmentation des cours pétroliers fera le bonheur de certains pays, mais le malheur d'autres. Il sera nécessaire d'abandonner les mesures de soutiens à l'activité qui ont caractérisé les politiques menées ces dernières années, tout en atténuant les conséquences de la hausse des prix des denrées alimentaires pour les ménages pauvres.

International Monetary Fund. African Dept.

Abstract

Sub-Saharan Africa's economic recovery is well under way, although among country groups there is variation in the speed of the recovery. In most of the region's low-income countries and among the seven oil exporters growth is almost back to precrisis levels. However, in the region's middle-income countries, including South Africa, the recovery has been more gradual. This Regional Economic Outlook describes the impact of recent economic developments---sharp increases in food and fuel prices will need fiscal interventions targeting the poor, while higher oil prices will be a boon to some countries and adversely affect others. Policy adjustments are needed to move away from the supportive stance of the last few years but should be balanced against the need to alleviate the impact of rising food prices on poor households.

Mr. Alessandro Prati, Mr. Luca A Ricci, Lone Engbo Christiansen, Mr. Stephen Tokarick, and Mr. Thierry Tressel

Abstract

Assessments of exchange rate misalignments and external imbalances for low-income countries are challenging because methodologies developed for advanced and emerging economies cannot be automatically applied to poorer nations. This paper uses a large database, unique in the set of indicators and number of countries it covers, to estimate the relationship in low-income countries between a set of fundamentals in the medium to long term and the real effective exchange rate, the current account, and the net external assets position.

Mr. Alfredo Cuevas and Secil Topak
When faced with a relative price shock, monetary authorities often aim to contain its second round effects on inflation while accepting first round effects. We analyze the experience of South Africa and other inflation targeters to explore whether and when this policy prescription implies changing the monetary policy stance. Inflation targeting central banks differ on how aggressively they typically react to relative price shocks, reflecting differences in resilience of underlying inflation to such shocks. An examination of individual policy decisions reveals the importance of the broader economic context in framing the responses to relative price shocks.
International Monetary Fund

This Selected Issues paper discusses the policy response by a sample of central banks to the ongoing oil and food price shocks in South Africa, drawing some lessons, which can help put in context developments in the country. The paper discusses first- and second-round effects of “supply shocks,” and attempts to gauge second-round effects in South Africa. The paper also analyzes the factors that have constrained South Africa’s growth since the end of apartheid, by comparing its GDP components and its saving and investment performance with those of a panel of faster-growing countries.

International Monetary Fund. African Dept.

Abstract

Selon ce rapport, les perspectives se sont quelque peu dégradées pour l'Afrique subsaharienne, et les risques ont augmenté. La croissance devrait diminuer dans la région, s'établissant à 6 % en 2008 et 2009. Cette dégradation tient principalement à l'envolée mondiale des prix des denrées alimentaires et des carburants, qui pèse fortement sur la croissance des pays importateurs de pétrole, ainsi qu'aux turbulences financières mondiales, qui ont freiné la croissance mondiale et la demande d'exportations en provenance de l'Afrique. L'inflation devrait atteindre 12 % en 2008, en raison principalement du choc sur les prix des denrées alimentaires et du pétrole. À cause de la hausse des prix, en particulier des prix alimentaires, il est fort possible que la pauvreté s'aggrave en 2008. En 2009, l'inflation devrait diminuer pour s'établir à 10 %, en raison de la baisse récente des prix des produits de base. Des risques considérables pèsent sur les perspectives, car les turbulences financières mondiales pourraient s'aggraver et se prolonger, entraînant un ralentissement accru de l'activité économique mondiale, et car les prix des produits de base restent entourés d'une grande incertitude.

International Monetary Fund. African Dept.

Abstract

Sub-Saharan Africa's prospects have deteriorated somewhat and the risks have increased, according to this report. Growth in the region is projected to dip to 6 percent in 2008 and 2009. The fall is due mainly to the global food and fuel price shock, which has weighed particularly on growth in oil-importing countries, and to the global financial market turmoil, which has slowed global growth and demand for Africa's exports. Inflation is expected to rise to 12 percent in 2008, mainly on account of the food and fuel price shock. As a result of rising prices, particularly of food, poverty may well be on the increase in 2008. In 2009, inflation should ease to 10 percent, helped by recent commodity price declines. There are significant risks to the outlook related to a potentially deeper and longer period of global financial turmoil and resulting slowdown in global activity, and substantial uncertainty concerning commodity prices.