This Selected Issues paper on the Eastern Caribbean Currency Union (ECCU) underlies key features of business cycles. To obtain new measures of classical and growth cycles, simple rules were applied to date turning points in the classical business cycle, and a recently developed frequency domain filter was used to estimate the growth cycle. At the regional level, the ECCU countries are facing two shocks, i.e., the depreciation of the U.S. dollar and the depreciation of the Dominican Republic’s peso. The countries of the ECCU have experienced modest erosion in their price and nonprice competitiveness.
This paper discusses the Interim Poverty Reduction Strategy Paper (I-PRSP) of Grenada for poverty reduction in the interim period. It describes the country’s macroeconomic, structural, and social policies in support of growth and poverty reduction, as well as associated external financing needs and major sources of financing. It reviews the National Poverty Eradication Strategy and analyzes the monitoring indicators, risks and costing of the strategy. It assesses the national development plan aimed at attaining the Millennium Development Goals.
Each year natural disasters affect about 200 million people and cause about $50 billion in damage. This paper compares the incidence of natural disasters across countries along several dimensions and finds that the relative costs tend to be far higher in developing countries than in advanced economies. The analysis shows that small island states are especially vulnerable, with the countries of the Eastern Caribbean standing out as among the most disaster-prone in the world. Natural disasters are found to have had a discernible macroeconomic impact, including large effects on fiscal and external balances, pointing to an important role for precautionary measures.