Mr. Ayhan Kose, Mr. Kenneth Rogoff, Mr. Eswar S Prasad, and Shang-Jin Wei
This study provides a candid, systematic, and critical review of recent evidence on this complex subject. Based on a review of the literature and some new empirical evidence, it finds that (1) in spite of an apparently strong theoretical presumption, it is difficult to detect a strong and robust causal relationship between financial integration and economic growth; (2) contrary to theoretical predictions, financial integration appears to be associated with increases in consumption volatility (both in absolute terms and relative to income volatility) in many developing countries; and (3) there appear to be threshold effects in both of these relationships, which may be related to absorptive capacity. Some recent evidence suggests that sound macroeconomic frameworks and, in particular, good governance are both quantitatively and qualitatively important in affecting developing countries’ experiences with financial globalization.
The global economy grew strongly in the first half of 2007, although turbulence in financial markets has clouded prospects. While the 2007 forecast has been little affected, the baseline projection for 2008 global growth has been reduced by almost ½ percentage point relative to the July 2007 World Economic Outlook Update. This would still leave global growth at a solid 4¾ percent, supported by generally sound fundamentals and strong momentum in emerging market economies. Risks to the outlook, however, are firmly on the downside, centered around the concern that financial market strains could deepen and trigger a more pronounced global slowdown. Thus, the immediate focus of policymakers is to restore more normal financial market conditions and safeguard the expansion. Additional risks to the outlook include potential inflation pressures, volatile oil markets, and the impact on emerging markets of strong foreign exchange inflows. At the same time, longer-term issues such as population aging, increasing resistance to globalization, and global warming are a source of concern