Khalid ElFayoumi, Ms. Izabela Karpowicz, Ms. Jenny Lee, Ms. Marina Marinkov, Ms. Aiko Mineshima, Jorge Salas, Andreas Tudyka, and Ms. Andrea Schaechter
Many European economies have faced pressure from rental housing affordability that has widened social and economic divergence. While significant country and regional differences exist, this departmental paper finds that in many advanced European economies a large and rising share of low-income renters, the young, and those living in cities is overburdened. In several locations, middle-income groups also increasingly face rental affordability issues.
Using bilateral data on migration across US metro areas, we find strong evidence that increasing house price and income inequality has reduced long distance migration, the type most linked to jobs. For those migrating uphill, from a less to a more prosperous location, lower mobility is driven by increasing house price inequlity, as the disincentives from higher house prices dominate the incentives from higher earnings. By contrast, increasing income inequality drives the fall in downhill migration as the disincentives from lower earnings dominate the incentives from lower house prices. The model underlines the plight of those trapped in decaying metro areas—those “left behind”.
International Monetary Fund. Asia and Pacific Dept
This 2016 Article IV Consultation highlights that with a soft global trade environment and a downturn in tourism arrivals from Mainland China, the growth rate of Hong Kong Special Administrative Region is expected to have slowed to 1.5 percent in 2016. Growth is likely to pick up modestly to about 2 percent in 2017, with private consumption continuing to be a main driver supported by a steady labor market. The current account surplus remained below 3 percent of GDP. Over the longer term, aging pressures may weaken the structural fiscal position, requiring fiscal planning to alleviate the decline, and a housing supply shortage also needs to be tackled.
This paper discusses the economic performance of Denmark. Although Denmark has a longstanding track record of sound economic and social policies, economic performance has been relatively weak for an extended period. The economy continues to grow slowly. After recording 1.3 percent growth in 2014, the economy grew by 1.2 percent in 2015, driven mostly by private consumption on the back of rising employment and real incomes. However, relatively strong performance in the first half of the year was partly undone by flagging exports in the second half of the year. Denmark has consistently run current account surpluses in recent decades, mostly reflecting structurally high retirement savings in the context of its funded pension system.
International Monetary Fund. External Relations Dept.
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Mr. William Lee, Mr. Jorge A Chan-Lau, Ms. Dora M Iakova, Mr. Papa M N'Diaye, Ms. Tao Wang, Ida Liu, Ms. Hong Liang, and Mr. Eswar S Prasad
This Occasional Paper provides an overview of the main challenges facing Hong Kong SAR as it continues to become more closely integrated with the mainland of China. Section I provides an overview of recent macroeconomic developments and the main policy issues in Hong Kong SAR. Section II examines various aspects of the ongoing integration with the mainland, and the associated implications for the structure of the economy, and for macroeconomic and structural policies. Section III examines the medium-term fiscal outlook under different policy scenarios and discusses alternative policy options to restore fiscal balance. Section IV reviews recent developments in the real estate sector and their macroeconomic impacts. Section V presents an econome tric analysis of deflation and its determinants. Section VI examines the factors behind, and the implications of, rising wage inequality in Hong Kong SAR. Section VII presents an overview of recent developments in the financial sector and provides an assessment of Hong Kong SAR’s prospects as an international financial center.