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Ms. May Y Khamis and Mr. Abdelhak S Senhadji

Prize or Penalty: When Sports Help Economies Score" looks at why countries vie to host the world's most costly sporting events. And, in a series of articles on "After the Crisis," we discuss why some countries were hit harder than others; how were shocks transmitted round the world, and whether protectionist pressures might intensify in 2010. As usual, we take on a number of hot topics, including housing prices, bankers' bonuses, Ponzi schemes, and inflation targeting. In "Picture This" we see that the number of hungry is on the rise, topping 1 billion. Our regular "People in Economics" column profiles Daron Acemoglu, the Turkish-born intellectual who won the American Economic Association's award in 2005 for the most influential U.S. economist under the age of 40. "Back to Basics" explains inflation; and "Data Spotlight" looks at how dollarization is declining in Latin America. Also includes articles by Nick Stern on climate change and Simon Johnson on bonuses and the "doomsday cycle

Mr. Chris Faulkner-MacDonagh and Mr. Martin Mühleisen

This paper presents a snapshot of changes in the world’s health and demographic conditions. The paper highlights that in most parts of the world, individuals are healthier and living longer, thanks to improved health services and living conditions and the more widespread use of immunization, antibiotics, and better contraceptives. Although this trend is likely to continue, hopes are fading in some regions where progress slowed or stopped in the 1990s, primarily as a result of the AIDS epidemic. Moreover, most regions of the developing world will not reach the Millennium Development Goals for health by 2015.

Mr. Charles Frederick Kramer

Asia Rising -- explores Asia's role in the world economy, the challenges faced from globalization, the quest for greater regional financial integration, the problem of lagging investment, and why East Asia performed so much better than Latin America. It also looks at the recovery of Japan and the rise of India and China. The economies of the ASEAN-4 come under the microscope in Country Focus. Other articles examine financial sector reform in Africa and the remaining hurdles to financial integration in the European Union. People in Economics profiles Paul Krugman, Back to Basics focuses on hedge funds, and the Straight Talk column looks at the problem of underdevelopment.

GARRY J. SCHINASI

For the latest thinking about the international financial system, monetary policy, economic development, poverty reduction, and other critical issues, subscribe to Finance & Development (F&D). This lively quarterly magazine brings you in-depth analyses of these and other subjects by the IMF’s own staff as well as by prominent international experts. Articles are written for lay readers who want to enrich their understanding of the workings of the global economy and the policies and activities of the IMF.

International Monetary Fund. Western Hemisphere Dept.

This Selected Issues paper analyzes pace of economic growth for Brazil. Moderating activity and stubbornly elevated inflation since 2010 have led to a reevaluation of Brazil’s long-term potential growth rate. Growth accounting suggests that potential growth is probably lower than was widely assumed in recent years and now stands at about 3½ percent. The demographic dividend of a rapidly expanding labor force is fading and further structural declines in unemployment are likely to be limited. Potential growth will rely more on the pace of capital deepening and productivity growth. Lifting both may require successful implementation of the infrastructure investment program, higher domestic saving, and structural reforms.

Kornélia Krajnyák, Mr. Martin Mühleisen, and Mr. Calvin Schnure

The Web edition of the IMF Survey is updated several times a week, and contains a wealth of articles about topical policy and economic issues in the news. Access the latest IMF research, read interviews, and listen to podcasts given by top IMF economists on important issues in the global economy. www.imf.org/external/pubs/ft/survey/so/home.aspx

Mr. Tim Callen

The modest economic recovery that appeared to be under way in Japan in early 2000 in the context of the buoyant global economy has now given way to renewed weakness. While real GDP grew by 1½ percent in 2000, the economy has slowed sharply this year as the high-tech-driven expansion succumbed to the U.S. and global electronics slowdown. Industrial production and exports have fallen by 9½ percent and 12½ percent, respectively, over the past year (see chart, this page); equity prices have declined by 32 percent to 17-year lows; the unemployment rate has risen to 5 percent; and deflationary pressures have continued, with underlying consumer prices currently declining by around ¾ of 1 percent (12-month basis) (see chart, page 292).

International Monetary Fund

This Selected Issues paper analyzes the recent French inflation behavior. The paper demonstrates that the recent change in French headline inflation behavior resulted from a few idiosyncratic, i.e., transient, factors. The paper describes the model setup and calibration of some crucial economic relations and parameters. The level of competition in labor and product markets in France and the other EU countries is discussed, including the size of markups. The paper also looks into the economic impact of increasing competition in each market separately and the advantages of coordinating reforms within the euro area.

International Monetary Fund

This 1999 Article IV Consultation highlights that Finland’s economy has made a strong recovery from the deep recession that began in the early 1990s. Spurred by a devaluation of the markka, growth was predominantly export driven, and the external current account shifted from a deficit of more than 5 percent in the early 1990s to a surplus of the same magnitude in 1997/98. In this setting, prudent macroeconomic policies brought public finances from a deficit of 7 percent of GDP in 1993 to a surplus in 1998.