The IMF Working Papers series is designed to make IMF staff research available to a wide audience. Almost 300 Working Papers are released each year, covering a wide range of theoretical and analytical topics, including balance of payments, monetary and fiscal issues, global liquidity, and national and international economic developments.
Luisa Zanforlin, César Calderón, and Alberto Chong
INTERNATIONAL MONETARY FUND
This paper analyzes the behavior of current account deficits in Africa and estimates whether the deficits are excessive with respect to fundamentals. The findings are the deficits are (i) not very persistent; (ii) positively linked with domestic growth; (iii) strongly linked with public (and private) savings, suggesting that fiscal consolidation in IMF-supported programs may be relatively effective; (iv) linked with aid flows, so as to close the external gap, and (v) linked with currency depreciation and the terms of trade. The deficit is "excessive," as it is almost 3 percent of the gross national disposable income above the equilibrium level.