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International Monetary Fund. Fiscal Affairs Dept.
This report provides an evaluation of fiscal transparency practices (FTE) in Benin according to the standards defined by the IMF’s Fiscal Transparency Code. The evaluation focuses on 36 principles covering three pillars of the Code: (I) fiscal reporting; (II) fiscal forecasting and budgeting; and (III) fiscal risk analysis and management. To take account of different levels of institutional capacity in each country, the Code distinguishes three levels of practices for each principle: basic, good, and advanced. A practice is considered “not met” if it has not met the Code’s requirements for basic level.
Mr. Alejandro D Guerson
This paper quantifies the savings obtained from risk pooling with a Regional Stabilization Fund (RSF) for the Eastern Caribbean Currency Union. A Monte Carlo experiment is used to estimate the size of a RSF conditional on probabilities of depletion under specific saving-withdrawal rules. Results indicate that regional risk pooling requires about half of the saving amount relative to the sum of individual-country savings. In addition to reducing the amount of saving requirements for stabilization, the RSF can improve welfare by realocating government consumption savings during booms towards public investment during recessions, resulting in an increase of public investment in the range of 0.5-1.5 percent of GDP per year depending on the country, with positive growth dividends. Moreover, the RSF also reduces the dispersion of public debt outcomes in light of the cross-country cyclical synchronicity of output and revenue, thereby strengthening the stability of the regional currency board.
Hites Ahir, Hendre Garbers, Mattia Coppo, Mr. Giovanni Melina, Mr. Futoshi Narita, Ms. Filiz D Unsal, Vivian Malta, Xin Tang, Daniel Gurara, Luis-Felipe Zanna, Linda G. Venable, Mr. Kangni R Kpodar, and Mr. Chris Papageorgiou
Despite strong economic growth since 2000, many low-income countries (LICs) still face numerous macroeconomic challenges, even prior to the COVID-19 pandemic. Despite the deceleration in real GDP growth during the 2008 global financial crisis, LICs on average saw 4.5 percent of real GDP growth during 2000 to 2014, making progress in economic convergence toward higher-income countries. However, the commodity price collapse in 2014–15 hit many commodity-exporting LICs and highlighted their vulnerabilities due to the limited extent of economic diversification. Furthermore, LICs are currently facing a crisis like no other—COVID-19, which requires careful policymaking to save lives and livelihoods in LICs, informed by policy debate and thoughtful research tailored to the COVID-19 situation. There are also other challenges beyond COVID-19, such as climate change, high levels of public debt burdens, and persistent structural issues.
Francesca G Caselli and Julien Reynaud
This paper estimates the causal effect of fiscal rules on fiscal balances in a panel of 142 countries over the period 1985-2015. Our instrumental variable strategy exploits the geographical diffusion of fiscal rules across countries. The intuition is that reforms in neighboring countries may affect the adoption of domestic reforms through peer pressure and imitational effects. We find that fiscal rules correlate with lower deficits, but the positive link disappears when endogeneity is correctly addressed. However, when considering an index of fiscal rules’ design, we show that well-designed rules have a statistically significant impact on fiscal balances. We conduct several robustness tests and show that our results are not affected by weak instrument problems.
Mariana Colacelli and Emilio Fernández Corugedo
Yes, partly. This paper studies the potential role of structural reforms in improving Japan’s outlook using the IMF’s Global Integrated Monetary and Fiscal Model (GIMF) with newly-added demographic features. Implementation of a not-fully-believed path of structural reforms can significantly offset the adverse effect of Japan’s demographic headwinds — a declining and ageing population — on real GDP (by about 15 percent in the next 40 years), but would not boost inflation or contribute substantially to stabilizing public debt. Alternatively, implementation of a fully-credible structural reform program can contribute significantly to stabilizing public debt because of the resulting increase in inflation towards the Bank of Japan’s target, while achieving the same positive long-run effects on real GDP. If no reforms are implemented, severe demographic headwinds are expected to reduce Japan’s real GDP by over 25 percent in the next 40 years.
Mr. Derek Anderson, Mr. Benjamin L Hunt, Mika Kortelainen, Mr. Michael Kumhof, Mr. Douglas Laxton, Mr. Dirk V Muir, Susanna Mursula, and Stephen Snudden
The Global Integrated Monetary and Fiscal model (GIMF) is a multi-region, forward-looking, DSGE model developed by the Economic Modeling Division of the IMF for policy analysis and international economic research. Using a 5-region version of the GIMF, this paper illustrates the model’s macroeconomic properties by presenting its responses under a wide range of experiments, including fiscal, monetary, financial, demand, supply, and international shocks.
Ms. Daria V Zakharova and Ms. Charleen A Gust
Though many aspects of Russia's fiscal policy framework are close to best practice on paper, actual practice in recent years has been moving away from best practice. In particular, the continued focus on the overall rather than the nonoil balance, and the regular use of supplemental budgets to spend windfall oil revenues contribute to procylicality of fiscal policy, risking costly boom-bust cycles. Against this background, this paper suggests several improvements to the framework for fiscal policy.
Mr. Carlo Cottarelli and José Vinãls
In response to the worst economic crisis since the 1930s, government budgets and central banks have provided substantial support for aggregate demand and for the financial sector. In the process, fiscal balances have deteriorated, government liabilities and central bank balance sheets have been expanded, and risks of future losses for the public sector have increased.