The pamphlet (which updates the 1995 Guidelines for Fiscal Adjustment) presents the IMF’s approach to fiscal adjustment, and focuses on the role that sound government finances play in promoting macroeconomic stability and growth. Structured around five practical questions—when to adjust, how to assess the fiscal position, what makes for successful adjustment, how to carry out adjustment, and which institutions can help—it covers topics such as tax policies, debt sustainability, fiscal responsibility laws, and transparency.
In recent years, the IMF has released a growing number of reports and other documents covering economic and financial developments and trends in member countries. Each report, prepared by a staff team after discussions with government officials, is published at the option of the member country.
The 2005 Article IV Consultation for the United States reports that robust productivity growth and high corporate profits have contributed to a strong rebound in business investment and some acceleration in employment. The financial sector appears well positioned to provide continued support to the recovery. Equity prices have risen, long-term interest rates remain low, banks are well capitalized and highly profitable, and indicators of credit quality remain strong. The robust housing market has caused financial regulators to tighten oversight of home equity and other residential loans.