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International Monetary Fund. European Dept.

Abstract

After holding up well in early 2008, growth slowed markedly in Europe, mainly owing to the ongoing impact of external shocks. Inflation rose to levels not seen in a decade, but with commodity prices stabilizing and the prospect of very weak activity, inflationary pressures are expected to recede. Advanced economies have been hit by extraordinary financial stress whose alleviation has become the overriding policy concern. For most emerging economies, where resource pressures continue even though growth is moderating, the principal challenges are to bring inflation under control and address external imbalances. Meanwhile, contingency plans need to be prepared to deal with possible financial instability.

International Monetary Fund. European Dept.

Abstract

The surge in commodity prices has boosted headline inflation across Europe. Analysis in this chapter focuses on the risks to inflation. Though some rigidities remain, improved labor market flexibility, the weakening economy, and strong monetary policy credibility should help limit second-round effects in the advanced economies. The risks of spillovers of price pressures to a broad range of consumption goods are greater in the emerging economies, where food and fuel account for a substantial share of consumption.

International Monetary Fund. European Dept.

Abstract

Differences in country-specific financing conditions may account for a dispersion of responses to a turnaround in the credit cycle across Europe. Moreover, by reinforcing the role of financial assets as borrowing collaterals, developments in national housing and corporate finance systems have the potential to make bank lending procyclical. In this way, the financial sector can amplify business cycle fluctuations as well as the impact of monetary policy shocks and asset price movements on real activity. Cross-border ownership of assets further bolsters this mechanism. By affecting the behavior of banks’ capital buffers over the cycle, banking regulation might have some role to play in mitigating procyclical swings in domestic credit conditions and, thereby, in lessening macroeconomic volatility.

International Monetary Fund. European Dept.

Abstract

The flows of labor across the borders of the European Union’s New Member States (NMS) have not only intensified significantly since the onset of transition, but have also become increasingly diverse and flexible. Cross-border labor mobility has been beneficial to the NMS, speeding up the convergence process in countries where these flows have been large. Contrary to perceptions, labor mobility is an unlikely source of overheating; instead, it tends to play a cushioning role over the business cycle. In the medium term, however, outward labor mobility may contribute to wage increases that could combine with other rigidities and set off second-round inflationary effects. These need to be kept in check to preserve competitiveness. Better mobilization and utilization of labor are also desirable, to meet the challenges of reversing current account imbalances and ensuring sustained growth in the long run.

ÅSLUND, ANDERS, BOONE PETER, and JOHNSON SIMON

Most former Soviet republics have fallen into an economic and political under-reform trap. An intrusive state imposes high tax rates and drives entrepreneurs into the unofficial economy, which further aggravates the pressure on official businessmen. Tax revenues and public goods dwindle, further reducing incentives to register business activity. This economic under-reform trap has a political counterpart. Remarkably, Communist parties remain popular and opposed to establishing the rule of law precisely in those places where they were able to delay and derail reform. No electoral backlash prompts the reforms necessary to leave the under-reform trap. The best way out of the trap in countries such as Russia and Ukraine is increased economic and political competition among the elite.

International Monetary Fund
En distribuant des moustiquaires pour combattre le paludisme, en construisant des écoles, ou bien encore en offrant un assainissement de base, la philanthropie aide à transformer le monde en développement. De riches donateurs consacrent des fortunes — souvent bâties dans les logiciels, le spectacle ou le capital-risque — pour vaincre la pauvreté et promouvoir le bien-être, servant d’appoint à l’aide publique, ou parfois même la dépassant. De Bill et Melinda Gates et Warren Buffett à Aliko Dangote et George Soros, les titans du capitalisme financent de nobles causes. Qu’il s’agisse de créer de nouveaux vaccins, de construire des bibliothèques ou de protéger la forêt amazonienne, les philanthropes appuient l’innovation sous toutes ses formes pour améliorer les conditions de vie et nourrir les aspirations. Ce numéro de F&D examine le monde de la philanthropie ciblée et de l’entreprenariat social. «La philanthropie a un rôle d’amorçage», déclare Bill Gates, le cofondateur de Microsoft, et le plus généreux donateur de la planète. «La fondation s’efforce de mettre en place un système qui permette aux forces du marché d’œuvrer en faveur des pauvres». Selon lui, l’effet de catalyse de la philanthropie peut être déterminant. «Les bonnes idées ont besoin d’apôtres et les laissés-pour-compte de défenseurs». L’ex-président Bill Clinton explique que les réseaux de coopération créative entre les États, les entreprises et la société civile peuvent mieux réussir à résoudre les problèmes les plus pressants de la planète. Prakash Loungani brosse le portrait de l’économiste superstar Jeffrey Sachs, champion de l’allègement de la dette et des objectifs du Millénaire pour le développement. Nous examinons en quoi les pays pauvres peuvent avoir intérêt à distribuer une partie des recettes exceptionnelles qu'ils tirent des ressources naturelles au lieu de financer des investissements pouvant être source de corruption. La rubrique Gros plan explique ce que font les banques centrales pour combattre la crise dans les pays avancés. Enfin, nous découvrons en quoi la croissance chinoise est une source de créativité pour le monde occidental.
International Monetary Fund
By combating malaria with mosquito nets or building schools and providing basic sanitation, philanthropy is helping transform the developing world. Rich donors are devoting fortunes—many of them earned through computer software, entertainment, and venture capitalism— to defeating poverty and improving lives, supplementing and in some cases surpassing official aid channels.From billionaires Bill and Melinda Gates and Warren Buffett to Aliko Dangote and George Soros, the titans of capitalism are backing good causes with their cash. Whether financing new vaccines, building libraries, or buying up Amazon rain forest to protect the environment, philanthropists are supporting innovations and new approaches that are changing lives and building dreams.This issue of F&D looks at the world of targeted giving and social entrepreneurship.“ Philanthropy’s role is to get things started,” says Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates, who is the world’s most generous giver. “We used foundation funds to set up a system to make market forces work in favor of the poor.” He says that catalytic philanthropy can make a big difference. “Good ideas need evangelists. Forgotten communities need advocates.” Former U.S. President Bill Clinton tells us that networks of creative cooperation between government, business, and civil society can get things done better to solve the world’s most pressing problems.Also in this issue, Prakash Loungani profiles superstar economist Jeffrey Sachs, who helped campaign for debt relief for developing economies and championed the Millennium Development Goals. We look at how, instead of spending commodity price windfalls on physical investments, which are often sources of corruption, governments of poor countries are sometimes well advised to hand some of the income over to their citizens. We examine moves by major central banks to ease our way out of the crisis enveloping advanced economies in our Data Spotlight column, and we hear about how China’s growth inspires creativity in the West.
International Monetary Fund
By combating malaria with mosquito nets or building schools and providing basic sanitation, philanthropy is helping transform the developing world. Rich donors are devoting fortunes—many of them earned through computer software, entertainment, and venture capitalism— to defeating poverty and improving lives, supplementing and in some cases surpassing official aid channels.From billionaires Bill and Melinda Gates and Warren Buffett to Aliko Dangote and George Soros, the titans of capitalism are backing good causes with their cash. Whether financing new vaccines, building libraries, or buying up Amazon rain forest to protect the environment, philanthropists are supporting innovations and new approaches that are changing lives and building dreams.This issue of F&D looks at the world of targeted giving and social entrepreneurship.“ Philanthropy’s role is to get things started,” says Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates, who is the world’s most generous giver. “We used foundation funds to set up a system to make market forces work in favor of the poor.” He says that catalytic philanthropy can make a big difference. “Good ideas need evangelists. Forgotten communities need advocates.” Former U.S. President Bill Clinton tells us that networks of creative cooperation between government, business, and civil society can get things done better to solve the world’s most pressing problems.Also in this issue, Prakash Loungani profiles superstar economist Jeffrey Sachs, who helped campaign for debt relief for developing economies and championed the Millennium Development Goals. We look at how, instead of spending commodity price windfalls on physical investments, which are often sources of corruption, governments of poor countries are sometimes well advised to hand some of the income over to their citizens. We examine moves by major central banks to ease our way out of the crisis enveloping advanced economies in our Data Spotlight column, and we hear about how China’s growth inspires creativity in the West.
International Monetary Fund
By combating malaria with mosquito nets or building schools and providing basic sanitation, philanthropy is helping transform the developing world. Rich donors are devoting fortunes—many of them earned through computer software, entertainment, and venture capitalism— to defeating poverty and improving lives, supplementing and in some cases surpassing official aid channels.From billionaires Bill and Melinda Gates and Warren Buffett to Aliko Dangote and George Soros, the titans of capitalism are backing good causes with their cash. Whether financing new vaccines, building libraries, or buying up Amazon rain forest to protect the environment, philanthropists are supporting innovations and new approaches that are changing lives and building dreams.This issue of F&D looks at the world of targeted giving and social entrepreneurship.“ Philanthropy’s role is to get things started,” says Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates, who is the world’s most generous giver. “We used foundation funds to set up a system to make market forces work in favor of the poor.” He says that catalytic philanthropy can make a big difference. “Good ideas need evangelists. Forgotten communities need advocates.” Former U.S. President Bill Clinton tells us that networks of creative cooperation between government, business, and civil society can get things done better to solve the world’s most pressing problems.Also in this issue, Prakash Loungani profiles superstar economist Jeffrey Sachs, who helped campaign for debt relief for developing economies and championed the Millennium Development Goals. We look at how, instead of spending commodity price windfalls on physical investments, which are often sources of corruption, governments of poor countries are sometimes well advised to hand some of the income over to their citizens. We examine moves by major central banks to ease our way out of the crisis enveloping advanced economies in our Data Spotlight column, and we hear about how China’s growth inspires creativity in the West.
International Monetary Fund
Ya sea luchando contra la malaria con mosquiteros, o construyendo escuelas y proporcionando saneamiento básico, la filantropía está ayudando a transformar el mundo en desarrollo. Donantes ricos dedican muchísimo dinero -obtenido en muchos casos a través de sus negocios en los sectores de la informática y el entretenimiento, o de inversiones de capital-riesgo- a luchar contra la pobreza y mejorar la calidad de vida de las personas, complementando y, en algunos casos, superando la ayuda oficial. Desde los multimillonarios Bill y Melinda Gates y Warren Buffett a Aliko Dangote y George Soros, los titanes del capitalismo respaldan las buenas causas con su dinero. Ya sea financiando nuevas vacunas, construyendo bibliotecas o adquiriendo tierras en la selva amazónica para proteger el medio ambiente, los filántropos respaldan distintos proyectos y enfoques innovadores que están cambiando la vida de la gente y construyendo sueños. En este número de F&D se examinan el mundo de las donaciones focalizadas y el empresariado social. “El papel de la filantropía es poner en marcha el proceso”, dice el cofundador de Microsoft, Bill Gates, el filántropo más generoso del mundo. “Usamos los fondos de la fundación para establecer un sistema que pusiera a las fuerzas del mercado a trabajar para los pobres”. Según Gates, la filantropía catalizadora puede tener un gran impacto. “Las buenas ideas necesitan divulgación. Las comunidades olvidadas necesitan apoyo activo”. El ex Presidente de Estados Unidos, Bill Clinton, señala que las redes de cooperación creativa entre el gobierno, las empresas y la sociedad civil pueden hacer las cosas mejor para resolver los problemas más apremiantes que afronta el mundo. También en este número, Prakash Loungani traza una semblanza del economista superestrella Jeffrey Sachs, quien apoyó la campaña en favor del alivio de la deuda de las economías en desarrollo e impulsó los Objetivos de Desarrollo del Milenio. Examinamos cómo, en lugar de utilizar las ganancias extraordinarias derivadas de los precios de las materias primas en inversiones físicas, los gobiernos de los países pobres deberían transferir parte de estos ingresos a los ciudadanos. En “Un vistazo a las cifras” analizamos las medidas adoptadas por los principales bancos centrales para salir de la crisis que afecta a las economías avanzadas, e incluimos un artículo sobre cómo el crecimiento en China incentiva la creatividad en Occidente.