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Mr. Adrian Alter, Jane Dokko, and Miss Dulani Seneviratne
We examine the relationship between house price synchronicity and global financial conditions across 40 countries and about 70 cities over the past three decades. The role played by cross-border banking flows in residential property markets is examined as well. Looser global financial conditions are associated with greater house price synchronicity, even after controlling for bilateral financial integration. Moreover, we find that synchronicity across major cities may differ from that of their respective countries’, perhaps due to the influence of global investors on local house price dynamics. Policy choices such as macroprudential tools and exchange rate flexibility appear to be relevant for mitigating the sensitivity of domestic housing markets to the rest of the world.
IMF Research Perspective (formerly published as IMF Research Bulletin) is a new, redesigned online newsletter covering updates on IMF research. In the inaugural issue of the newsletter, Hites Ahir interviews Valeria Cerra; and they discuss the economic environment 10 years after the global financial crisis. Research Summaries cover the rise of populism; economic reform; labor and technology; big data; and the relationship between happiness and productivity. Sweta C. Saxena was the guest editor for this inaugural issue.
International Monetary Fund. Monetary and Capital Markets Department

Abstract

Financial stability has continued to improve since the October 2016 Global Financial Stability Report (GFSR). Economic activity has gained momentum, as outlined in the April 2017 World Economic Outlook (WEO), amid broadly accommodative monetary and financial conditions, spurring hopes for reflation. Chapter 2 analyzes the potential long-term impact of a scenario of sustained low growth and low real and nominal rates for the business models of financial institutions and the products offered by the financial sector. Chapter 3 examines whether countries still retain influence over their domestic financial conditions in a globally integrated financial system. The chapter develops financial conditions indices that make it possible to compare a large set of advanced and emerging market economies.

International Monetary Fund. Monetary and Capital Markets Department

Abstract

Financial stability has continued to improve since the October 2016 Global Financial Stability Report (GFSR). Economic activity has gained momentum, as outlined in the April 2017 World Economic Outlook (WEO), amid broadly accommodative monetary and financial conditions, spurring hopes for reflation. Chapter 2 analyzes the potential long-term impact of a scenario of sustained low growth and low real and nominal rates for the business models of financial institutions and the products offered by the financial sector. Chapter 3 examines whether countries still retain influence over their domestic financial conditions in a globally integrated financial system. The chapter develops financial conditions indices that make it possible to compare a large set of advanced and emerging market economies.

Giulia Bettin, Mr. Andrea F Presbitero, and Mr. Nikola Spatafora
This paper examines how international remittances are affected by structural characteristics, macroeconomic conditions, and adverse shocks in both source and recipient economies. We exploit a novel, rich panel data set, covering bilateral remittances from 103 Italian provinces to 107 developing countries over the period 2005-2011. We find that remittances are negatively correlated with the business cycle in recipient countries, and increase in response to adverse exogenous shocks, such as natural disasters or large declines in the terms of trade. Remittances are positively correlated with economic conditions in the source province. Nevertheless, in the presence of similar negative shocks to both source and recipient economies, remittances remain counter-cyclical with respect to the recipient country.
Mr. Manik L. Shrestha and Mr. Marco Marini
This paper presents a statistical analysis of revisions in quarterly gross domestic product (GDP) of the Group of Twenty countries (G-20) since 2000. The main objective is to assess whether the reliability of early estimates of quarterly GDP has been weakened from the turmoil of the 2008 financial crisis. The results indicate that larger and more downward revisions were observed during the years 2008 and 2009 than in previous years.
International Monetary Fund. Research Dept.
The Q&A in this issue features seven questions about emerging markets and the financial crisis (by Ayhan Kose); the research summaries are "Tax Revenue Response to the Business Cycle" (by Cemile Sancak, Ricardo Velloso, and Jing Xing) and "Banking Crisis Resolution: Was this Time Different?" (by Luc Laeven and Fabian Valencia). The issue also lists the contents of the second issue of the IMF Economic Review, Volume 58 Number 2; visiting scholars at the IMF during October-December 2010; and recent IMF Working Papers and Staff Position Notes.
Burcu Aydin
This paper analyzes the cyclical fluctuations in South Africa in a cross-country context, and studies the impact of the output gap by controlling for export intensity, the debt burden, asset prices, and banking crises. Results show that South Africa’s revenue performance was outstanding during the mid-2000s, and the recent decline in revenue was one of the least among the emerging and advanced markets. Results on the elasticity of tax revenue show that South Africa’s elasticity is higher during business upturns, indicating good prospects for recovering the revenue lost during the global financial crisis.