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International Monetary Fund. External Relations Dept.

format of the book—a series of twenty-nine memoranda to a US president from a CEA chairman—was born in a flight of fantasy. “I imagined,” Schultze explains, “a new president promising to devote an hour or so a week to learning about key economic relationships.” However implausible that scenario may be, the straightforward Schultze does write his text to educate—if not the president then bureaucrats, journalists, and interested bystanders. With memos on subjects like “Monetary Policy: What It Can and Cannot Do,” “Unemployment: Who, How Long, Why,” and the intriguing “A

Mr. Prakash Loungani and Martin Feldstein

CEA chairman Herb Stein and certainly before I had heard the term.” At the Council Given the tenor of Feldstein’s work, it came as no surprise that he was invited by U.S. President Ronald Reagan to become the chairman of his Council of Economic Advisers when the position became vacant in 1982. Though a supporter of the Reagan tax cuts, Feldstein did not buy into the claims of many of the president’s advisers that the cuts would be self-financing. Feldstein says he had “no doubt that certain tax cuts, such as in the capital gains tax or in the very highest

Prakash Loungani profiles and Joseph Stiglitz

public school, a white teacher in a school with predominantly African-American kids. His father told him about the moral and legal importance of paying the household help’s social security—Stiglitz says that listening to his father “saved me a lot of trouble when I was up for Senate confirmation” as CEA chairman. And he fondly remembers an uncle who, though a successful businessman, was critical of President Kennedy for being too anti-union. A high school personality test suggested that Stiglitz would do well as a rabbi. He didn’t go off in that direction, but at

Mr. Robert P Flood

been ambivalent, at best, or outright opposed. In October 2002, a few days after the IMF/World Bank Annual Meetings, then CEA Chairman Glen Hubbard said the SDRM might not be necessary if market players could construct their own private debt rescheduling forum, a remark that was interpreted as encouraging Wall Street opposition. There is no reason to think the private market could on its own achieve a debt rescheduling forum. The Alternative of Market Mechanisms Coming out of the crises of 1997-98 there appeared to have been widespread agreement that some

International Monetary Fund

products on the accuracy of the CPI inflation, and accordingly has announced that new items including personal computers and mobile phone services will be added to the sample basket in the next revision for 2000 base. 6 The report “Toward a More Accurate Measure of the Cost of Living,” known as the “Boskin Report,” was presented to the U.S. Senate Finance Committee in December 1996, by its Advisory Commission to Study the Consumer Price Index, led by former CEA Chairman Michael Boskin. It classified the sources of measurement error into: a) upper level

International Monetary Fund
A sustained decline in fertility rates underlies a rapid aging and decline of Japan's population. This will have profound social and economic implications. The paper illustrates the difficult situation facing Japanese fiscal policy in the years ahead. The findings of this paper indicate that there may be a role for foreign exchange interventions in providing stimulus at the current conjuncture. Deposit insurance reform is a central element in the government strategy to strengthen the Japanese banking system. The unemployment-deflation puzzle in Japan has been explained.
International Monetary Fund. External Relations Dept.
This paper presents a snapshot of changes in the world’s health and demographic conditions. The paper highlights that in most parts of the world, individuals are healthier and living longer, thanks to improved health services and living conditions and the more widespread use of immunization, antibiotics, and better contraceptives. Although this trend is likely to continue, hopes are fading in some regions where progress slowed or stopped in the 1990s, primarily as a result of the AIDS epidemic. Moreover, most regions of the developing world will not reach the Millennium Development Goals for health by 2015.
International Monetary Fund. External Relations Dept.
Climate Change: Stimulating a Green Recovery” looks at the global problem of climate change. With the world apparently on an economic recovery path, policymakers are looking at ways to limit the impact of climate change through broad international action. One of the challenges is to balance actions to mitigate climate change with measures to stimulate growth and prosperity. This issue of F&D also examines a variety of issues raised by the crisis—including the future of macroeconomics, explored by William White, former chief economist at the Bank for International Settlements, and the longer-term impact of the crisis on the United States, the world’s largest economy. Our “People in Economics” profile spotlights Joseph Stiglitz, the Nobel Laureate who “can’t get any respect at home.” We also look at the need for rebalancing growth in Asia, which is leading the world out of recession, and we interview five influential Asians on the region’s fragile rebound. We turn our “Straight Talk” column over to Barbara Stocking of Oxfam, who makes a forceful case for stepping up help to the most vulnerable around the world. “Data Spotlight” looks at trends in inflation, which has fallen into negative territory in some countries during the crisis, and in “Point-Counterpoint,” two experts discuss the pros and cons of remittances—funds repatriated by migrant workers to family and friends back home. “Back to Basics” gives a primer on international trade.
International Monetary Fund. External Relations Dept.
For the latest thinking about the international financial system, monetary policy, economic development, poverty reduction, and other critical issues, subscribe to Finance & Development (F&D). This lively quarterly magazine brings you in-depth analyses of these and other subjects by the IMF’s own staff as well as by prominent international experts. Articles are written for lay readers who want to enrich their understanding of the workings of the global economy and the policies and activities of the IMF.
Mr. Robert P Flood
The paper discusses a model in which growth is a negative function of fiscal burden. Moreover, growth discontinuously switches from high to low as the fiscal burden reaches a critical level. The paper provides an overview of key elements of corporate bankruptcy codes and practice around the world that are relevant to the debate on sovereign debt restructuring. It also describes the broad trends in international financial integration for a sample of industrial countries and explains the cross-country and time-series variation in the size of international balance sheets.