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Mr. Ashraf Khan and Majid Malaika
Based on technical assistance to central banks by the IMF’s Monetary and Capital Markets Department and Information Technology Department, this paper examines fintech and the related area of cybersecurity from the perspective of central bank risk management. The paper draws on findings from the IMF Article IV Database, selected FSAP and country cases, and gives examples of central bank risks related to fintech and cybersecurity. The paper highlights that fintech- and cybersecurity-related risks for central banks should be addressed by operationalizing sound internal risk management by establishing and strengthening an integrated risk management approach throughout the organization, including a dedicated risk management unit, ongoing sensitizing and training of Board members and staff, clear reporting lines, assessing cyber resilience and security posture, and tying risk management into strategic planning.. Given the fast-evolving nature of such risks, central banks could make use of timely and regular inputs from external experts.
Ruud A. de Mooij, Dinar Prihardini, Antje Pflugbeil, and Mr. Emil Stavrev
Luxembourg receives ample investment from multinational corporations, in part due to some attractive features in its international tax rules. Around 95 percent of these foreign investments pass through Luxembourg via companies performing holding and/or intra-group financing activities. While their contribution to Luxembourg’s economy is modest relative to their large overall balance sheets, they still generate around 3 percent of GDP in tax revenue, create almost 4500 direct jobs, and spend almost 3 percent of GDP on salaries and purchases of business services. Ongoing changes in the international corporate tax framework pose risks to these economic contributions, which this paper attempts to quantify. It also discusses options for reforms in Luxembourg’s tax system that could help offset adverse revenue and economic effects.
Tahsin Saadi Sedik and Rui Xu
In this paper we analyze the dynamics among past major pandemics, economic growth, inequality, and social unrest. We provide evidence that past major pandemics, even though much smaller in scale than COVID-19, have led to a significant increase in social unrest by reducing output and increasing inequality. We also find that higher social unrest, in turn, is associated with lower ourput and higher inequality, pointing to a vicious cycle. Our results suggest that without policy measures, the COVID-19 pandemic will likely increase inequality, trigger social unrest, and lower future output in the years to come.
Giancarlo Corsetti, Joao B. Duarte, and Samuel Mann
We study the transmission of monetary shocks across euro-area countries using a dynamic factor model and high-frequency identification. We develop a methodology to assess the degree of heterogeneity, which we find to be low in financial variables and output, but significant in consumption, consumer prices, and variables related to local housing and labor markets. Building a small open economy model featuring a housing sector and calibrating it to Spain, we show that varying the share of adjustable-rate mortgages and loan-to-value ratios explains up to one-third of the cross-country heterogeneity in the responses of output and private consumption.
Katharina Bergant, Michael Fidora, and Martin Schmitz
We analyse euro area investors' portfolio rebalancing during the ECB's Asset Purchase Programme at the security level. Our empirical analysis shows that euro area investors (in particular investment funds and households) actively rebalanced away from securities targeted under the Public Sector Purchase Programme and other euro-denominated debt securities, towards foreign debt instruments, including `closest substitutes', i.e. certain sovereign debt securities issued by non-euro area advanced countries. This rebalancing was particularly strong during the first six quarters of the programme. Our analysis also reveals marked differences across sectors as well as country groups within the euro area, suggesting that quantitative easing has induced heterogeneous portfolio shifts.
Mr. Serhan Cevik and Carolina Correa-Caro
This paper investigates the main determinants of income inequality in transition countries during the period 1990–2018. To this end, we address a major methodological challenge that lies at the core of the cross-country literature on income inequality: the potential endogeneity of income growth, which is largely ignored by most empirical studies. We adopt a two-pronged empirical strategy by (i) using trading partners’ weighted average real GDP as an instrumental variable (IV), and (ii) estimating the model via the two-stage least squares (2SLS) approach for static models and the Generalized Method of Moments (GMM) estimator for dynamic models. Our empirical findings are consistent with the Kuznets curve that illustrates a nonlinear relationship between income inequality and the level of economic development. We also find that the redistributive impact of fiscal policy is statistically insignificant and taxation and government spending appear to have the opposing effects on income inequality in transition economies.