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International Monetary Fund. Western Hemisphere Dept.
This 2018 Article IV Consultation highlights that in 2018, Dominica’s output is projected to decline by 14 percent and to take about 5 years to recover to pre-hurricane levels. The fall in output and government revenue, coupled with increased expenditure for rehabilitation and reconstruction, will lead to a substantial worsening of fiscal and external deficits. However, signs of recovery, particularly in construction and the public sector, have already started to emerge. The risks to the outlook include the budget becoming financially constrained and unable to sustain adequate investment given high debt, limited buffers, weak revenue, and urgent needs for reconstruction spending. Other risks include financial instability stemming from undercapitalization of systemic financial institutions, recurrent natural disasters, and external competitiveness challenges.
International Monetary Fund. Western Hemisphere Dept.
This 2017 Article IV Consultation highlights that Dominica’s recovery from Tropical Storm Erika (August 2015) has been slower than anticipated, with output growth of 1 percent in 2016, dragged down by a storm-related decline in manufacturing. Moreover, capacity constraints and unfavorable weather slowed public investment more than anticipated. Despite ample liquidity, bank credit to the private sector remains weak, although this is in part relieved by growing lending by credit unions. Growth is projected to accelerate to above 3 percent in 2017–18 on the back of a pickup in public investment and several large-scale private projects with citizenship-by-investment and grant financing.
International Monetary Fund. External Relations Dept.
This paper focuses on the United States and the United Kingdom that were the main architects of the post-1945 order, with the creation of the United Nations systems, but they now appear to be pioneers in the reverse direction—steering an erratic, inconsistent, and domestically controversial course away from multilateralism. Other countries, meanwhile, for various reasons are incapable of assuming that global leadership and the rest of the world likely would not support a new hegemon in any event. The postwar system created at the BrettonWoods, New Hampshire, conference in 1944 should be credited with economic growth, a reduction in poverty, and the absence of destructive trade wars. It built a comity that encourages to this day cooperation on issues as diverse as taxation, financial regulation, climate change policy, and terrorism financing. The central postwar concern was international financial stability. The United States and the newly created International Monetary Fund were at the center of a system that sought to maintain that stability by linking exchange rates to the dollar, with the IMF the arbiter of any changes.
International Monetary Fund. Western Hemisphere Dept.
This Selected Issues paper analyzes spillover risks for Colombia. It highlights that external shocks could spill over to the Colombian economy through the country’s important and growing trade and financial linkages with the rest of the world. Colombia would be most exposed to a decline in oil prices, which could have a sizable adverse impact on the balance of payments, the fiscal accounts and growth. Growth shocks in key trading partners could also have a negative impact, particularly in the United States, which is Colombia’s main trading partner. Colombia’s fiscal rule and adjustment in the context of resource wealth is also analyzed.
International Monetary Fund

Abstract

The five Regional Economic Outlooks published biannually by the IMF cover Asia and Pacific, Europe, the Middle East and Central Asia, Sub-Saharan Africa, and the Western Hemisphere. In each volume, recent economic developments and prospects for the region are discussed as a whole, as well as for specific countries. The reports include key data for countries in the region. Each report focuses on policy developments that have affected economic performance in the region, and discusses key challenges faced by policymakers. The near-term outlook, key risks, and their related policy challenges are analyzed throughout the reports, and current issues are explored, such as when and how to withdraw public interventions in financial systems globally while maintaining a still-fragile economic recovery.These indispensable surveys are the product of comprehensive intradepartmental reviews of economic developments that draw primarily on information the IMF staff gathers through consultation with member countries.

International Monetary Fund. Research Dept.
The Research Summaries in the September 2013 IMF Research Bulletin focus on “External Conditions and Debt Sustainability in Latin America” (Gustavo Adler and Sebastian Sosa) and “Monetary Policy Cyclicality in Emerging Markets” (Donal McGettigan, Kenji Moriyama, and Chad Steinberg). In the Q&A, Itai Aigur and Sunil Sharma discuss “Seven Questions on Macroprudential Policy Frameworks.” The Research Bulletin also includes an updated listing of recent IMF Working Papers, Staff Discussion Notes, and Recommended Readings from the IMF Bookstore, as well as information on a forthcoming conference. The IMF Economic Review’s new Impact Factor is also highlighted.
Mr. Luca A Ricci, Mr. Marcos d Chamon, and Ms. Yuanyan S Zhang
The availability of financial instruments related to indices that track global financial conditions and risk appetite can potentially offer countries alternative options to insure against external shocks. This paper shows that while these instruments can explain much of the in-sample variation in borrowing spreads, this fails to materialize in hedging strategies that work well out-of-sample during tranquil times. However, positions on instruments such as those tracking the US High Yield Spread, the VIX, and especially other emerging market CDS spreads can substantially offset adverse movements in own spreads during times of systemic crises. Moreover, high risk countries seem to gain more, as their underlying weaknesses makes them more vulnerable to external shocks. Overall, the limited value in tranquil times, coupled with political economy arguments and innovation costs could justify the limited interest for this type of hedging in practice
Mr. Paolo Mauro, Mr. Torbjorn I. Becker, Mr. Jonathan David Ostry, Mr. Romain Ranciere, and Mr. Olivier D Jeanne

Abstract

This paper focuses on what countries can do on their own—that is, on the role of domestic policies—with respect to country insurance. Member countries are routinely faced with a range of shocks that can contribute to higher volatility in aggregate output and, in extreme cases, to economic crises. The presence of such risks underlies a potential demand for mechanisms to soften the blow from adverse economic shocks. For all countries, the first line of defense against adverse shocks is the pursuit of sound policies. In light of the large costs experienced by emerging markets and developing countries as a result of past debt crises, fiscal policies should seek to improve sustainability, taking into account that sustainable debt levels seem to be lower in emerging and developing countries than in advanced countries. Although much can be accomplished by individual countries through sound policies, risk management, and self-insurance through reserves, collective insurance arrangements are likely to continue playing a key role in cushioning countries from the impact of shocks.

Rafael Romeu and Lawrence Ausubel
This paper studies the participation and performance of sophisticated versus unsophisticated auction participants in an environment with numerous bidders, uncertainty, and asymmetric information. We examine multi-unit, pay-as-bid, currency auctions conducted by the Central Bank of Venezuela. We find that sophisticated bidders outperform their less sophisticated rivals during periods of high volatility, apparently as a result of their superior informationgathering ability. The result is consistent across both quantity (sophisticated bidders win more market share) and price (sophisticated bidders pay lower premiums). The result is consistent with the view that a pay-as-bid auction format may be detrimental to participation by less-informed bidders.
Mr. Robin Brooks, Mr. Kenneth Rogoff, Mr. Ashoka Mody, Nienke Oomes, and Mr. Aasim M. Husain