International Monetary Fund. Legal Dept., International Monetary Fund. Strategy, Policy, &, Review Department, and International Monetary Fund. Monetary and Capital Markets Department
The note concludes that the Fund could support a member’s use of buybacks, cash sweeteners, or collateral in the context of a Fund-supported program, provided that (i) debt restructurings using buybacks, cash sweeteners or collateral offer significant efficiency gains relative to debt restructurings that do not rely on such instruments, but are underpinned by a regular Fund-supported program; and (ii) an adequate cushion of non-multilateral debt remains after the operation. The conditions under which buybacks, cash sweeteners or collateral can be expected to deliver significant efficiency gains are narrow and specified in some detail.
Mr. Marco Arena, Gabriel Di Bella, Mr. Alfredo Cuevas, Mr. Borja Gracia, Vina Nguyen, and Alex Pienkowski
Estimates of the natural interest rate are often useful in the analysis of monetary and other macroeconomic policies. The topic gathered much attention following the great financial crisis and the Euro Area debt crisis due to the uncertainty regarding the timing of monetary policy normalization and the future path of interest rates. Using a sample of European countries (including several members of the Euro Area), this paper provides estimates of country-specific natural interest rates and some of their drivers between 2000 and 2019. In line with the literature, our findings suggest that natural interest rates declined during this period, and despite a rebound in the last few years of it, they have not recovered to their pre-crisis levels. The paper also discusses the implications of the decline in natural interest rates for monetary conditions and debt sustainability.
International Monetary Fund. Monetary and Capital Markets Department
This Technical Note on Cooperative Banks and Credit Unions for the Republic of Poland reviews the cooperative bank and credit union sectors. It focuses on: the situation of the two sectors that are both in states of transition; the regulatory and supervisory arrangements; and the safety net and resolution regime within the context of the crisis management framework. In addition, key perspectives are provided as to the sustainability of institutional models and the sectors within a modernizing and competitive banking sector. Most cooperative banks and credit unions are found to be stable; however, each sector has its own issues. The Financial Sector Assessment Program is broadly supportive of the policy direction for cooperatives, while it questions whether the credit union sector should remain standalone. The two existing Institutional Protection Schemes and their affiliating banks need to be strengthened to ensure sustainability. Policymakers are thus advised to decide whether a standalone credit union sector remains appropriate and, if not, define a strategy to transition viable credit unions to become or consolidate with banks.
This Selected Issues Paper’s objective is to illustrate economic benefits and costs from euro adoption by reviewing the main arguments and empirical evidence in Central and Eastern Europe: New Member States (NMS). The parameters of the euro adoption debate have shifted. Although countries joining the euro area in the 2000s could expect to benefit from a significant country risk premium, this premium has mostly vanished with the euro crisis. The NMS that have maintained exchange rate flexibility and monetary policy autonomy have, in general, made good use of it. During convergence, nominal currency appreciation supported more balanced growth and restrained credit and asset price booms. It is an open question whether the macroeconomic volatility of the past decade will recur. If divergent growth patterns and volatility were to repeat, euro adoption would constrain macro-policy options, especially for economies with large income gaps and asynchronized business cycles vis-à-vis the euro area. Thus, a large burden would be placed on other policy instruments to safeguard balanced growth, notably counter-cyclical fiscal policy and macro-prudential policies. Structural reforms to boost growth potential and facilitate internal adjustment would also be important.
This review of the Flexible Credit Line (FCL), the Precautionary and Liquidity Line (PLL), and the Rapid Financing Instrument (RFI) focuses on four key issues: (i) the demand for the FCL and PLL in the context of the broader role of the Fund’s lending (including precautionary) instruments in the global financial safety net (GFSN); (ii) the qualification/conditionality framework for the FCL and the PLL; (iii) concerns about repeated usage of FCL arrangements by the same members and consideration of ways to further improve the transparency in the discussion of access/exit in the underlying staff documents; and (iv) the lack of demand for the RFI.
This paper argues that the large differences among EU countries in post-crisis employment performance are to a large extent driven by the need to adjust corporate balance sheets, which had greatly deteriorated during the boom years in some countries but not in others. To close the large gaps between saving and investment, firms reduced investment and cut costs to boost profits. With much of the cost adjustment falling on firms’ wage bills, employment losses were largest in countries under the most intense pressures to improve corporate profitability and with limited wage flexibility due to labor market duality.
Since the start of the 2008 - 09 financial crisis, the Polish Overnight Index Average (POLONIA) has persistently been below the policy rate, suggesting a limited influence of the NBP’s open market operations on the short-term interbank rate. In this regard, this paper analyzes the behavior of the POLONIA spread and explore several potential factors that could influence the spread. An empirical analysis confirms that the negative POLONIA spread is related to a few factors, which include the existence of the structural liquidity in the banking system; bank’s unwillingness to lock up liquidity in the NBP bills; the frontloading of banks’ fulfillment of the reserve requirements; and external market sentiment. The analysis also shows the effectiveness of the NBP’s responses to the financial crisis and structural liquidity surplus.