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International Monetary Fund
This Selected Issues paper analyzes the properties of the fiscal surplus rule, a key pillar of Chile’s macroeconomic framework. The findings suggest that the rule is near the volatility-minimizing efficiency frontier. The paper assesses the vulnerability of the Chilean banking system to external and domestic shocks, and examines recent trade performance. The study finds that both exports and imports have been driven predominantly by demand factors. There is also some evidence that trade liberalization has contributed to the recent trade expansion, but exchange rate effects are only found to have a marginal impact.
International Monetary Fund. Research Dept.
The IMF Research Bulletin, a quarterly publication, selectively summarizes research and analytical work done by various departments at the IMF, and also provides a listing of research documents and other research-related activities, including conferences and seminars. The Bulletin is intended to serve as a summary guide to research done at the IMF on various topics, and to provide a better perspective on the analytical underpinnings of the IMF’s operational work.
Mr. Alessandro Rebucci and Mr. Matteo Ciccarelli
We propose using a Bayesian time-varying coefficient model estimated with Markov chain-Monte Carlo methods to measure contagion empirically. The proposed measure works in the joint presence of heteroskedasticity and omitted variables and does not require knowledge of the timing of the crisis. It distinguishes contagion not only from interdependence but also from structural breaks and can be used to investigate positive as well as negative contagion. The proposed measure appears to work well using both simulated and actual data.
J. J. Polak and Mr. Peter B. Clark
This paper describes how the changed conditions in the international monetary system have undermined the role originally envisaged for the SDR. It argues that the concept of a global stock of international liquidity, which was fundamental to the creation of the SDR, is now no longer relevant. Nonetheless, there are good reasons to satisfy part of the growing demand for international reserves with SDR allocations: (i) there are efficiency gains, as SDRs can be created at zero resource cost, and thus obviate the need for countries to run current account surpluses or engage in expensive borrowing to obtain reserves, and (ii) there would be a reduction in systemic risk, as SDRs would substitute to some extent for borrowed reserves, which are less reliable and predictable source of reserves, especially in times of crisis.
Mr. M. G O'Callaghan

Abstract

This paper describes the structure of the world gold market, its sources of supply and demand, and how it functions. The paper examines the composition and origin of physical stocks of gold, their flows, and their market destination and also reviews the operation of bullion and paper gold markets.

Mr. M. G O'Callaghan
This paper describes the structure of the world gold market, its sources of supply and demand, and how it functions. The market has three principal functions in three major locations: the New York futures market speculates on spot prices, which are largely determined in London, whereas physical gold is in large part shipped through Zurich. The market is dominated by large suppliers and gold holders, including monetary authorities. Some unique characteristics of the gold market ensure confidentiality, and as a result, there are gaps in existing knowledge and data. The paper identifies and attempts to fill these gaps.
International Monetary Fund

Abstract

This paper reviews key findings of the IMF’s Annual Report for the fiscal year ended April 30, 1973. The report highlights that world economic developments in 1972 and the first half of 1973 were dominated by a strong cyclical upsurge in activity, high rates of price inflation, and currency crises and unrest punctuated by another realignment of major currencies in February–March 1973. With key elements of the Bretton Woods system no longer observed, the work of reforming the international monetary system continued in the IMF through the Committee of Twenty.

International Monetary Fund. External Relations Dept.
This paper describes what the limits to growth are. The paper highlights that many critical variables in global society—particularly population and industrial production—have been growing at a constant percentage rate so that, by now, the absolute increase each year is extremely large. Such increases will become increasingly unmanageable unless deliberate action is taken to prevent such exponential growth. The paper also underscores that physical resources—particularly cultivable land and nonrenewable minerals—and the earth’s capacity to “absorb” pollution are finite.
International Monetary Fund. Research Dept.
This chapter focuses on the special drawing rights (SDR) scheme and the working of the gold exchange standard. This paper discusses the main influences involved in the relationship between SDRs and other reserve assets in a context of future reserve growth and suggests certain general conditions that may be necessary for SDRs to become the predominant source of reserve growth. The central question considered in this paper can be approached by asking in what ways the availability of SDRs as a supplement to other reserve growth should be expected to influence the basic forces operating under the gold exchange standard. The approach requiring the smallest element of international control would be to make the return on SDRs more attractive by comparison with that available on foreign exchange holdings, that is, to raise the SDR interest rate. A substantial increase in this rate would involve several separate considerations, which can be given only summary consideration here.