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International Monetary Fund. External Relations Dept.

In March, the IMF, the Bank for International Settlements (BIS), the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), and the World Bank announced the joint publication of the first of a new series of quarterly releases of statistics for 176 developing and transition countries (see IMF Survey, March 22, 1999, pages 90–91). In mid-June, the second quarterly release of the Joint BIS-IMF-OECD-World Bank Statistics on external debt was posted on the websites of the contributing organizations. In early July, an on-line data access facility will be included to allow users to download and manipulate time series for each of the data categories covered. This article provides guidance to users to help them interpret the time series presented on the website (see

International Monetary Fund

This Selected Issues paper for Canada presents comprehensive and broad-based analysis of the role of domestic and external shocks. Canada’s economic history illustrates the important role played by external as well as domestic macroeconomic disturbances. Canada’s economy slowed in 2001 because of the global slowdown, although by less than in many other countries. In 2003, the recovery has been interrupted by a series of shocks that moderated growth. Fluctuations in Canadian real GDP are explained by external and domestic cycles.

Mr. Peter Stella

Although rarely acknowledged explicitly, the financial strength of an independent and credible central bank must be commensurate with its policy tasks and the risks it faces. This paper explores the relationship between central bank financial strength and policy outcomes, stressing the importance of financial independence as a fundamental support to policy credibility. The attributes of an adequate central bank capital policy are discussed and implications drawn for the appropriate way in which central banks ought to be recapitalized. Reasons why this issue has not been clearly analyzed in the past—primarily owing to idiosyncratic and obscure central bank accounting—are also presented. [JEL E42, E58, E61]

International Monetary Fund. Western Hemisphere Dept.

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.

International Monetary Fund. Western Hemisphere Dept.

In an economy that is using the US dollar as legal tender such as Ecuador, money creation is in principle impossible. But a series of legislation approved in 2009–2014, allowed an expansion of the Central Bank of Ecuador’s (BCE) balance sheet in the 2010s to finance the fiscal deficit, leaving the public sector with large liabilities towards the BCE and low reserve coverage that put the financial system at risk. This note reviews the legal and policy changes that affected the functioning of the BCE and how this institution took part of the financing of the public sector in the 2010s. A stress test analysis is performed to evaluate the liquidity impact of such policies.

Mr. Andrew Crockett

The inflationary potential of credit creation in the Euro-currency markets has in recent years been a subject of increasing concern to national and international monetary authorities. As a result, there have been numerous attempts, in both official and academic circles, to measure this potential and to find means by which it can be offset or limited.1 Most studies of the subject use techniques developed in the analysis of domestic banking systems. In particular, much work on the Eurocurrency market has followed the credit multiplier approach, originally developed to explain credit expansion in a closed banking system.

Rudolf Kroc

In the last issue of Finance and Development (Vol. II, No. I) the author described the system of quotas, subscriptions, and charges on which the Fund’s financial structure is based. In this article he explains the repurchase obligations which are designed to maintain the revolving character of the Fund’s resources under the Fund’s Articles of Agreement.