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International Monetary Fund. African Dept.
This Selected Issues paper analyzes policies that can raise potential growth in small middle-income countries (SMICs) of sub-Saharan Africa (SSA). The findings suggest that although macroeconomic stability and trade openness are necessary for productivity growth, they are not sufficient. SMICs in SSA need to improve the quality of their public spending, most notably on education, to solve the problem of skill mismatch in the labor market, reduce the regulatory burden on firms, improve access to financing by small and medium-size enterprises, and pave the way for structural transformation in these economies. Given the short-term cost of these reforms, the timing and sequencing of reforms and the role of quick wins is important for their implementation. In some cases, a social bargain can be a mechanism to generate consensus around a package of mutually reinforcing reforms.
International Monetary Fund. European Dept.
This paper on Romania was prepared by a staff team of the International Monetary Fund as background documentation for the periodic consultation with the member country. It is based on the information available at the time it was completed on September 13, 2012. The views expressed in this document are those of the staff team and do not necessarily reflect the views of the government of Romania or the Executive Board of the IMF.
International Monetary Fund
This Selected Issues and Analytical Note on Finland discusses the potential spillovers to Finland from various shocks associated with cross-country interlinkages. The note provides an overview of the trade and financial linkages, assesses the impact of global fiscal consolidation on Finland via trade links, quantifies dynamic contributions from external sources to growth, and uses these contributions to forecast the potential loss to Finnish GDP from a growth slowdown in other European countries; and analyzes the potential impact from the banking sector or sovereign stress.
International Monetary Fund
This 2005 Article IV Consultation highlights that despite the better cyclical outlook, medium-term trends for Italy remain troubling: potential growth is estimated at just 1¼ percent, as low productivity growth and high domestic costs have led to a steady erosion of competitiveness and export market share. The 2005 fiscal deficit target of 4.3 percent of GDP is estimated to have been met, thanks in part to measures introduced by the authorities. For 2006, the authorities have committed to a deficit target of 3.5 percent of GDP.
International Monetary Fund
The paper first uses the production function to analyze the sources of past growth in Singapore and compares it with the experience of other Asian and industrialized economies. This study also provides some thoughts on how to boost medium-term growth prospects in Singapore, and assesses the growth slowdown of the past few years in Singapore reflecting cyclical versus structural factors. The assessment given in this paper suggests that there are returns to be had from investment in education and structural reforms.
International Monetary Fund
This 2003 Article IV Consultation highlights that Canada’s strong policy framework has brought impressive economic results, and the Canadian economy has proven exceptionally resilient in the face of the recent global downturn. Economic activity slowed relatively modestly in 2001, with only one quarter of output decline recorded, and growth recovered strongly thereafter, averaging 4 percent over the subsequent four quarters. Household consumption and residential investment have remained robust. Household and business demand was supported by sustained productivity growth, rapid growth of employment and labor incomes, and gains in real estate prices.
International Monetary Fund
This 2002 Article IV Consultation highlights that the United States economy slipped into recession in early 2001, as industrial production dropped sharply, investment and exports declined, and employment and weekly hours fell. The downturn was triggered in part by the collapse of the Information Technology boom and stock prices in March 2000, but was further exacerbated by the September 11th terrorist attacks. As a result, following real GDP growth in excess of 4 percent during the previous four years, the economy slowed sharply in 2001.
International Monetary Fund
This Selected Issues paper presents updated IMF staff estimates of potential output growth for the United States, using data through 2001 that incorporates the full cyclical upswing of the 1990s and the subsequent mild recession, as well as taking into account the revisions to the national accounts released in July 2000. The paper also reviews recent investment trends and provides estimates of the extent to which the capital stock has deviated from its long-term equilibrium.
International Monetary Fund
Sound fiscal and monetary policies have provided a strong foundation for the longest U.S. economic expansion on record. Executive Directors agreed that the U.S. economy strength had been supported by rising real income, enhanced profitability, and rising household wealth. Directors cautioned the need to reduce the domestic demand growth, and maintain monetary and fiscal policies. Directors expressed concern about the decline in personal saving, rise in household and corporate debt levels, and supported preemptive efforts to limit potential bank balance sheet risks.