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International Monetary Fund. Research Dept.

Abstract

The following remarks by the Acting Chair were made at the conclusion of the Executive Board’s discussion of the World Economic Outlook on March 21, 2008.

International Monetary Fund. Research Dept.

Abstract

The global expansion is losing speed in the face of a major financial crisis. The slowdown has been greatest in the advanced economies, particularly in the United States, where the housing market correction continues to exacerbate financial stress. The emerging and developing economies have so far been less affected by financial market turbulence and have continued to grow at a rapid pace, led by China and India, although activity is beginning to moderate in some countries. In the baseline, the U.S. economy will tip into a mild recession in 2008 as a result of mutually reinforcing housing and financial market cycles, with only a gradual recovery in 2009, reflecting the time needed to resolve underlying balance sheet strains. Activity in the other advanced economies will be sluggish in both 2008 and 2009 in the face of trade and financial spillovers. Growth in the emerging and developing economies is also projected to slow, although it should remain above long-term trends in all regions. Risks to the global projections are tilted to the downside, especially those related to the possibility of a full-blown credit crunch, while emerging and developing economies will not be insulated from a serious downturn in the advanced economies. Against this background, policymakers in the advanced economies must continue to grapple with the task of restoring stability to housing and financial markets while addressing downside risks to growth, without jeopardizing inflation performance or longer-term policy goals. Many emerging and developing economies still face the challenge of avoiding overheating or any buildup in vulnerabilities, but policymakers should be ready to respond judiciously to a deteriorating external environment.

International Monetary Fund. Research Dept.

Abstract

As discussed in Chapter 1, a global slowdown in activity, led by a sharp downturn in the United States and the spreading crisis in financial markets, will create more difficult external conditions for all regions of the world. This chapter examines in more detail how different regions are likely to fare in this environment and the policy challenges that are likely to arise.1

International Monetary Fund. Research Dept.

Abstract

This chapter examines how innovations in housing finance systems in advanced economies over the past two decades have altered the role of the housing sector in the business cycle and in the monetary policy transmission mechanism. It concludes that these changes have broadened the spillovers from the housing sector to the rest of the economy and have amplified their impact by strengthening the role of housing as collateral. This analysis suggests that in economies with more developed mortgage markets, monetary policymakers may need to respond more aggressively to developments in the housing sector, within a risk-management approach that treats house price dynamics as one of the key factors to be considered in assessing the balance of risks to output and inflation.

International Monetary Fund. Research Dept.

Abstract

This chapter uses a global dynamic model to examine the macroeconomic and financial consequences of policies to address climate change. Although these consequences can be rapid and wide-ranging, this chapter finds that the overall costs of mitigation could be minimized if policies are well designed and accepted by a broad group of countries.

International Monetary Fund. Research Dept.

Abstract

This chapter examines the role of soaring commodity prices in contributing to emerging and developing economies’ growing trade and financial integration into the global economy. It finds that improvements in institutions and policy frameworks help explain why the current commodity price boom is proving more favorable to developing economies than previous booms, bringing rapid growth in exports (especially manufacturing exports), investment (both domestic and foreign), and output. Continued progress in trade and financial integration will require sustained efforts to further strengthen institutions and economic policies in developing countries.

Mr. Nicolas Arregui, Ms. Ruo Chen, Mr. Christian H Ebeke, Jan-Martin Frie, Mr. Daniel Garcia-Macia, Ms. Dora M Iakova, Andreas Jobst, Louise Rabier, Mr. James Roaf, Ms. Anna Shabunina, and Mr. Sebastian Weber
This paper discusses sectoral policies needed to achieve the ambitious greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions reduction targets announced in the European Union’s Green Deal, complementing the companion paper “EU Climate Mitigation Policy”, which focuses on broader EU-level policies. With total emissions nearly a quarter below their 1990 level, the EU has made important progress, but the new goals will require much stronger policy action. Moreover, progress has varied across sectors. Emissions from power and industry have fallen by about a third, buildings by a quarter and agriculture by a fifth – while transport emissions have risen. This paper argues that this divergence reflects differences in effective carbon prices, but also cost differences among the available abatement channels, market imperfections, and policy gaps. It discusses specific sectoral policies needed to address these factors and achieve the new emissions reduction goals.
Khalid ElFayoumi, Ms. Izabela Karpowicz, Ms. Jenny Lee, Ms. Marina Marinkov, Ms. Aiko Mineshima, Jorge Salas, Andreas Tudyka, and Ms. Andrea Schaechter
Many European economies have faced pressure from rental housing affordability that has widened social and economic divergence. While significant country and regional differences exist, this departmental paper finds that in many advanced European economies a large and rising share of low-income renters, the young, and those living in cities is overburdened. In several locations, middle-income groups also increasingly face rental affordability issues.
Mr. Prakash Loungani

Prize or Penalty: When Sports Help Economies Score" looks at why countries vie to host the world's most costly sporting events. And, in a series of articles on "After the Crisis," we discuss why some countries were hit harder than others; how were shocks transmitted round the world, and whether protectionist pressures might intensify in 2010. As usual, we take on a number of hot topics, including housing prices, bankers' bonuses, Ponzi schemes, and inflation targeting. In "Picture This" we see that the number of hungry is on the rise, topping 1 billion. Our regular "People in Economics" column profiles Daron Acemoglu, the Turkish-born intellectual who won the American Economic Association's award in 2005 for the most influential U.S. economist under the age of 40. "Back to Basics" explains inflation; and "Data Spotlight" looks at how dollarization is declining in Latin America. Also includes articles by Nick Stern on climate change and Simon Johnson on bonuses and the "doomsday cycle

International Monetary Fund
The sharp and sustained increase in Ireland's housing prices well in excess of income growth, together with rapidly declining affordability for new house buyers, raises concerns that expectations-led demand may have resulted in housing prices overshooting their sustainable levels. The paper reviews the main factors behind the improvement in Ireland's economic performance, and alternative assessments of the stance of fiscal policy during a period of rapidly accelerating economic growth. The major factors that are likely to influence fiscal policy are also reviewed.