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International Monetary Fund

Abstract

The past year has been a time of unexpected challenges for the international community, International Monetary Fund (IMF) Managing Director Christine Lagarde says in her foreword to the institution’s Annual Report 2015—Tackling Challenges Together, published today. Amid the continued focus on spurring stronger and more inclusive growth and strengthening global cooperation, the IMF faced economic developments that required rapid adjustments. Highlights of the IMF’s work during the year included insight into the international impact of falling oil prices, financing and policy advice for countries in difficulties, emergency funding to combat the Ebola crisis in West Africa, a new relief fund for the poor and most vulnerable countries hit by natural or public health disasters, research on fiscal policy to reduce inequality, free online training for the public and government officials, and online statistical data free of charge for all users. The report covers the work of the IMF’s Executive Board and contains financial statements for the year May 1, 2014, to April 30, 2015. It describes the IMF’s support for its 188 member countries, with an emphasis on the core areas of IMF responsibility: assessing their economic and financial policies, providing financing where needed, and building capacity in key areas of economic policy.

International Monetary Fund. External Relations Dept.
'Crisis Stalls Globalization: Reshaping the World Economy' examines the multiple facets of the recession--from the impact on individual economies to the effect on the external accounts of the world’s lenders and borrowers--and offers a variety of suggestions for supporting a recovery and averting future crises. Several IMF studies shed light on the depth of the crisis--including a survey of the sharp drop in trade finance, along with quantitative findings about the direct and indirect costs of the financial turbulence--and debate what is to be done from several angles, including the redesign of the regulatory framework and ways to plug large data gaps to prevent future crises and aid in the creation of early warning systems. Opinion pieces discuss the shifting boundaries between the state and markets, the agenda for financial sector reform, and the governance of global financial markets. The issue also includes a historical perspective to see when restructuring the global financial architecture actually succeeds. 'People in Economics' profiles Nouriel Roubini; 'Back to Basics' looks at what makes a recession; and 'Data Spotlight' examines Latin America's debt.