Back Matter
  • 1 0000000404811396https://isni.org/isni/0000000404811396International Monetary Fund

Abstract

This paper summarizes recent developments in the relationships between the IMF, member countries, and commercial banks, with specific reference to five European countries. The paper also highlights that Better assessment of trends in the market and of the attitude of commercial banks toward borrowing countries. These would include: a deeper analysis of capital flows, with special attention to interbank transactions; an improvement in the collection of statistical data and additional efforts made by member countries to release adequate information; and a further examination of the usefulness of setting up in the Fund an internal country risk assessment statistical model. The report also suggests that there should be adequate Fund involvement in rescheduling negotiations through discussions with Paris Club members on rescheduling patterns and possibly through an elaboration of guidelines for rescheduling bank claims; appropriate action to cope with liquidity crises; and adequate international cooperation among central banks acting as lenders of last resort.

Appendix: List of Institutions Visited

International Organizations

  • International Monetary Fund

  • Bank for International Settlements

  • International Bank for Reconstruction and Development

  • Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development

Governments and Central Banks

  • Washington/New York: U.S. Treasury; Federal Reserve System

  • London: Treasury; Bank of England

  • Bonn/Frankfurt: Ministry of Finance; Deutsche Bundesbank

  • Paris: Ministry of Finance; Banque de France

  • Vienna: Austrian National Bank

  • Zürich: Swiss National Bank

Commercial Banks

  • New York

    • Citibank

    • Chase Manhattan Bank

    • Morgan Guaranty Trust Company

    • Manufacturers Hanover Trust Company

    • Bankers Trust Company

    • Chemical Bank

  • London

    • Lloyds Bank

    • Barclays Bank

    • Midland Bank

    • National Westminster Bank

  • Frankfurt

    • Deutsche Bank

    • Dresdner Bank

    • Commerzbank

    • Bank für Gemeinwirtschaft

  • Paris

    • Banque Nationale de Paris

    • Crédit Lyonnais

    • Société Générale

    • Union de Banques Arabes et Françaises

  • Zürich

    • Union Bank of Switzerland

    • Swiss Bank Corporation

    • Crédit Suisse

  • Amsterdam

    • Algemene Bank Nederland

    • Amsterdam-Rotterdam Bank

  • Brussels

    • Société Générate de Banque

  • Vienna

    • Creditanstalt-Bankverein

  • Toronto

    • The Royal Bank of Canada

  • Others

    • The First National Bank of Chicago

    • Bank of America

    • Bank of Tokyo

Investment Banks

  • New York

    • Lehmann Brothers Kuhn Loeb

    • Paribas-Warburg

    • J. Henry Schroeder Bank and Trust Company

  • London

    • Morgan Grenfell

    • Kleinworth, Benson

  • Paris

    • Lazard Frères

Research Organizations and Consulting Firms

  • Wharton Econometrics Forecasting Associates (Washington)

  • Council on Foreign Relations (New York)

  • Group of Thirty (New York)

  • Carnegie Endowment for International Peace (New York and Washington)

  • Institute for International Economics (Washington)

  • Institute of International Finance (Washington)

  • Institut Francais des Relations Internationales (Paris)

Borrowing Countries

Portugal: Ministry of Finance, Central Bank, commercial banks (Banco Portugues de Atlantico, Banco Pinto e Sotto Mayor, Banco Espirito Santo e Commercial De Lisboa, Banco Totta e Acores), Development Bank

Turkey: Ministry of Finance, Central Bank, commercial banks (Isbank, Akbank, Turkiye Garanti Bankasi, Pamukbank), Chamber of Commerce, Development Bank

Romania: Ministry of Finance, National Bank, Bank for Foreign Trade

Hungary: National Bank, Foreign Trade Bank, Central European International Bank

Yugoslavia: Executive Council, Ministry of Finance, National Bank, commercial banks (Jugobanka, Zagrebacka Banka, Privredna Banka Zagreb, Ljubljanska Banka, Beogradska Banka).

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1

See E. Brau, R. C. Williams, and others, Recent Multilateral Debt Restructurings with Official and Bank Creditors, Occasional Paper No. 25, International Monetary Fund (Washington, December 1983). Hereinafter referred to as Brau and Williams, Recent Multi-lateral Debt Restructurings.

2

These figures are based on data provided in Table 2 of the quarterly reports (“International Banking Developments”) published by the BIS. Net international bank credit is defined as total gross external assets of banks in the BIS reporting area netted out for redepositing among banks within the BIS reporting area. Unless indicated otherwise, all flow figures are on an exchange rate adjusted basis. Quarterly figures at the end of the year are used in the Annual Reports of the BIS and in the text of this paper, unless indicated otherwise. As described in footnote 26 below, semiannual figures give a somewhat more encouraging picture for credit expansion to non-BIS countries.

3

See also World Economic Outlook: A Survey by the Staff of the International Monetary Fund, Occasional Papers No. 21, May 1983, and No. 27, April 1984 (Washington: International Monetary Fund).

4

The Group of Ten countries, Luxembourg, Switzerland, Austria, Denmark, Ireland, and branches of U.S. banks in offshore centers (the Bahamas, the Cayman Islands, Hong Kong, Panama, and Singapore).

5

The terms credits to deficit countries and deposits from surplus countries should be interpreted on a net basis. The international banking system collects deposits from entities throughout the world (including from deficit countries) and grants credits to entities throughout the world (including from surplus countries).

6

The narrowly defined Euromarket, as calculated by the BIS (banks of the reporting European countries, after elimination of redepositing), displays the same overall picture (see Table 3).

7

Bank for International Settlements, “The Maturity Distribution of International Bank Lending—First Half 1983” (Basle, January 1984).

8

Fifteen hundred U.S. banks presently have transborder claims among their assets.

9

The relative proportion of the various types of borrowers varies over time, but a standard pattern for banks within the BIS reporting area is one third private entities, one third governments, and one third public entities (and on the deposit side, one third banks, one third nonbanks, and one third central monetary authorities).

10

For a more detailed analysis of participants in international bank lending, see the bibliography, below, notably, Group of Thirty.

11

See, for example, “Country Credit,” in Institutional Investor, Vol. 16 (New York, September 1982), pp. 241–44. The list varies slightly each year, but on average is as follows:

7 U.S. banks—Citibank, Chase Manhattan, Morgan Guaranty Trust, Bank of America, Manufacturers Hanover Trust, Bankers Trust, Chemical (plus Irving Trust in some years);

4 U.K. banks—Lloyds, National Westminster, Barclays, Mid-land;

3 German banks—Deutsche Bank, Dresdner Bank, Commerz-bank (or some years Westdeutsche Landesbank Girozentrale);

4 Canadian banks—Royal Bank of Canada, Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce, Bank of Montreal, Bank of Nova Scotia (or some years Toronto-Dominion Bank);

3 Japanese banks—Bank of Tokyo, Industrial Bank of Japan, Fuji Bank (or some years Sumitomo Bank or Dai-Ichi Kangyo Bank); Fuji Bank (or some years Sumitomo Bank or Dai-Ichi Kangyo Bank);

3 French banks—Banque Nationale de Paris, Société Générate, Crédit Lyonnais;

3 Swiss banks—Union Bank of Switzerland, Swiss Bank Corporation, Crédit Suisse; and

1 Belgian bank—Société Générale de Banque (or some years Kredietbank or a Netherlands bank, Algemene).

12

Transactions in U.S. dollars between banks are now fully integrated through the clearing house interbank payments system (CHIPS), which, since October 1, 1981, has been operating in New York as an electronic credit transfer system for worldwide settlement of dollar accounts and gives special responsibilities to the seven largest New York clearing banks.

13

These 332 banks (out of a total of 380 banks having participated in 1980 in syndicated loans for a total of 4,918 participations) comprised 54 U.S. banks, 24 Japanese banks, 21 German banks, 19 French banks, 18 British banks, 15 Italian banks, 14 Austrian banks, 11 Swiss banks, 9 Canadian banks, plus 60 other European banks (of which 22 were from Spain or Portugal), 25 banks from the Middle East, and 62 banks from other countries or consortium banks.

14

For some observers (see Group of Thirty, Risks in International Banking (New York, 1982), p. 57) this expansion in the number of participants had been an important element in the growth of the market that might well disappear in view of present difficulties.

15

See, notably, Group of Thirty, Risks in International Lending (New York, 1982).

16

The BIS publishes quarterly data on gross external claims of banks to the BIS reporting area and more detailed semiannual data on the maturity structure of reporting banks’ external claims (see the bibliography below). These data are not fully comprehensive (for example, they exclude trust funds and fiduciary accounts in Swiss banks and provide an incomplete coverage of offshore centers). In addition, in spite of recent efforts, quarterly figures are published with a lag of about four months (April 19, 1984 for data into their systems before fixing their new quarterly limits (which would imply having data as of December 31, 1983 available on March 15, 1984). Semiannual figures are published with a lag of about five months (December 1983 for first-half 1983 developments).

17

See, for instance, H. Robert Heller, “International Lending, Risk, and Portfolio Quality,” a paper presented at the Conference on the Conditions of International Monetary Stability, Montevideo, Uruguay, December 16, 1981 (mimeographed; Bank of America, San Francisco). The paper shows that the correlation between the changes in debt, reserves, and GDP is greatly enhanced by the inclusion of a “SCORE” element (rating by Institutional Investor).

18

Paul A. Volcker, Chairman, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System, “Sustainable Recovery: Setting the Stage,” remarks at the Fifty-Eighth Annual Meeting of the New England Council, Boston, Massachusetts, November 16, 1982. See also statement by Mr. Volcker in U.S. Congress, House, Committee on Banking, Finance and Urban Affairs, International Financial Markets and Related Problems: Hearings, 98th Cong., 1st Sess., February 2, 8, and 9, 1983 (Washington: U.S. Government Printing Office, 1983), and in Federal Reserve Bulletin, Vol. 69 (Washington, January 1983), pp. 80–89.

19

This trend continued in 1983, with OPEC deposits with BIS reporting banks declining by $15 billion during the year (the total amount outstanding at the end of December 1983 was $120 billion).

20

This trend was reversed in 1983, when net external positions of banks in the United States declined by $18 billion.

21

While a LIBOR-related rate implies Eurodollar funding, a rate derived from the prime rate implies domestic dollar funding.

22

At the end of December 1983, U.S. banks’ international banking facilities’ claims totaled $172 billion.

23

This additional cost has, however, been reduced by the development of interest-swap transactions under which a bank may issue a fixed rate bond and swap it against a floating rate liability of another borrower.

24

On the Eurodollar certificates of deposit market, which is, after the interbank market, the second largest external funding source available, with an established total size of $90 billion against $120 billion for U.S. banks’ domestic certificates of deposit, the tiering was reported as still larger. When compared with the rates obtained by the largest U.S. banks, other banks had to pay a premium of about 20 basis points (regional U.S. banks) and 40–60 basis points (Canadian banks, European banks, Japanese banks, and some U.S. banks).

25

See Brau and Williams, Recent Multilateral Debt Restructurings.

26

It should be noted that there is a rather large discrepancy between quarterly figures and semiannual figures for the second half of 1982. In particular, the semiannual figures released in July 1983 (for the second half of 1982) indicate an increase of international bank claims on non-BIS countries (excluding unallocated and international organizations) of $22 billion for the second half of 1982 and of $52 billion for the year as a whole, against $13 billion and $39 billion, respectively, on the basis of quarterly figures. These differences are due to a broader coverage of offshore countries and to the reallocation to individual countries of fairly large residuals contained in the quarterly figures. These differences should be kept in mind when assessing recent trends in the market, the more so since the same discrepancy prevailed during the first half of 1983, according to semiannual figures released in December 1983 by the BIS. The series on bank external lending to developing countries (including OPEC countries—BIS definition) compare as follows:

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27

With a downward trend during the period: $14 billion in the first quarter, $7 billion in the second, and $8 billion in the third.

28

Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, Financial Market Trends (Paris: OECD Publications Center, November 1983).

29

“The Impact of Interest Rates on International Finance and Trade,” an address by the Managing Director of the International Monetary Fund, J. de Larosiere, before the Fourth International Monetary Conference, convened by the Global Interdependence Center in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, November 9, 1982. See international Monetary Fund, IMF Survey (Washington), Vol. 11 (November 15, 1982), pp. 353, 359–64; at p. 364.

30

Bank for International Settlements, Monetary and Economic Department, The International Interbank Market: A Descriptive Study, BIS Economic Paper, No. 8 (Basle, July 1983).

31

The respective shares of official debt, debt to private banks, and debt to other private creditors were as follows:

article image

32

Total external debt of non-oil developing countries has developed as follows (World Economic Outlook: A Survey by the Staff of the International Monetary Fund, Occasional Papers No. 21, May 1983, and No. 27, April 1984 (International Monetary Fund: Washington):

article image

33

Deposits of foreign banks with Turkish banks, denominated in Turkish liras, and benefiting from the high interest rates, but with an exchange rate guarantee (principally in deutsche mark and Swiss francs) given by the Central Bank of Turkey. These deposits, which enabled foreign bankers to obtain an effective interest return of 20 percent on Swiss franc deposits, were marketed to over 200 foreign banks and stood at $2. 3 billion in August 1979.

34

Among CMEA countries, Romania had a high level of gross external debt in relation to GNP (18 percent) at the end of 1980, against 20 percent for Hungary, 18 percent for Poland, and about 10 percent or less for the others). (Gerhard Fink, An Assessment of European CMEA Countries’ Hard Currency Debt, a paper presented at the Eurocurrency/Advanced Management Research Conference on Country Risk Assessment, New York, September 24–25, 1981, The Vienna Institute for Comparative Economic Studies (Vienna, September 1981), pp. 21, 22); owing to the large oil processing trade, the ratio of debt to exports to Western countries (217 percent against an average of 274 percent for European CMEA countries other than the U.S.S.R.) was less unsatisfactory.

35

In 1979, the ratio of gross debt to exports to Western countries for Hungary was about 200 percent (against about 300 percent for Poland, about 200 percent for the German Democratic Republic, and less than 200 percent for the other CMEA countries); the ratio of net debt to GNP was above 20 percent (against 18 percent for Poland and Romania, and 10 percent or less for the other CMEA countries); Fink, cited in footnote 34 above.

36

Efforts in the direction of better monitoring of private sector external debt have, however, to be balanced against the need, in an export-oriented development strategy, to strengthen the ability of the private sector to mobilize directly the financial resources it requires.

37

There is in particular a need for better information on financial flows among CME A countries and between oil producing and oil consuming countries (oil trade financing). In addition, a comparative study of the various schemes by which countries attract remittances from their expatriate workers would help the countries concerned.

38

Cited in footnote 30, above.

39

Cf. U.S. Public Law 98-181, November 30, 1983, 97 STAT. 1279.

40

An alternative course of action, at least for central banks relying on a capital adequacy ratio between capital and weighted assets, would be to give greater weight (and thus a larger capital requirement) to problem sovereign loans.

41

It appears that for some countries the concept of foreign exchange reserves is blurred because there may be commitments to maintain a certain level of reserves as deposits in specific banks, formal pledging agreements of reserves against short-term credits, or gold swap agreements involving some double counting of reserves. This is an area in which the Fund, after a more detailed study, could try to elaborate more precise standard definitions.

42

The World Bank’s External Debt Division (Economic Analysis and Projections Department) collects standardized data on external debt operations, new commitments, and future debt service as regards public and publicly guaranteed debt and, in a limited number of cases, nonguaranteed private debt, of one year or more.

43

Group of Thirty, Risks in International Banking (New York, 1982).

44

Obviously, the rules on the protection of the confidential nature of the information provided to the Fund by member countries would have to be applied as to direct communications with banks.

45

Bahram Nowzad, Richard C. Williams, and others, External Indebtedness of Developing Countries, International Monetary Fund, Occasional Paper No. 3 (Washington, 1981), p. 33.

46

From 1976 to 1980, the average annual increase in external debt reached about 30 percent or more of current account receipts for such countries as Mexico (39 percent), Argentina (38 percent), and Brazil (27 percent).

47

William R. Cline, International Debt and the Stability of the World Economy, Policy Analyses in International Economics, No. 4, Institute for International Economics (Washington, September 1983).

48

See Brau and Williams, Recent Multilateral Debt Restructurings.

49

See, notably, Richard S. Dale and Richard P. Mattione, Managing Global Debt, The Brookings Institution (Washington, 1983); Morgan Guaranty Trust Company of New York, World Financial Markets (New York, April, May, and October 1982); William R. Cline (cited in footnote 47 above); and World Economic Outlook: A Survey by the Staff of the International Monetary Fund, Occasional Paper No. 27 (Washington, April 1984).

50

The impact on non-oil developing countries of the reduction in banking flows on current account deficits was partly compensated for by a massive swing in reserve movements (from an accumulation of $2 billion in 1981 to a drawdown of about $7 billion in 1982) and by a small rise, from $5. 6 billion to $6. 3 billion, in the use of Fund credit (World Economic Outlook: A Survey by the Staff of the International Monetary Fund, Occasional Paper No. 21, International Monetary Fund (Washington, May 1983), p. 194). One significant source of financing for part of the 1982 deficit—the reduction of reserves—is no longer available.

51

Brau and Williams, Recent Multilateral Debt Restructurings.

52

The implementation of the agreement described in the Agreed Minutes of the Paris Club is ensured through bilateral agreements in which the interest rate and other variables are determined.

53

Chandra S. Hardy, Rescheduling Developing Country Debts, 1956–1981: Lessons and Recommendations, Overseas Development Council (Washington, June 1982).

54

Bank for International Settlements, Press Communiqué (Basle, September 9, 1974).

55

A default on a foreign exchange commitment and a closure of the bank in the middle of a working day.

56

Handled through cooperative action between the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, the Bank of England, and other central banks, leading to a solution (a takeover by a consortium of European banks) that did not entail any loss to creditors.

57

Bank for International Settlements, Committee on Banking Regulations and Supervisory Practices, “Report on the Supervision of Banks’ Foreign Establishments” (“Basle Convention”) (Basle, September 26, 1975).

58

Ibid., “Principles for the Supervision of Banks’ Foreign Establishments” (Basle, June 9, 1983).

Out of print

Occasional Papers of the International Monetary Fund

1. International Capital Markets: Recent Developments and Short-Term Prospects, by a Staff Team Headed by R.C. Williams, Exchange and Trade Relations Department. 1980.

2. Economic Stabilization and Growth in Portugal, by Hans O. Schmitt. 1981.

3. External Indebtedness of Developing Countries, by a Staff Team Headed by Bahram Nowzad and Richard C. Williams. 1981.

4. World Economic Outlook: A Survey by the Staff of the International Monetary Fund. 1981.

5. Trade Policy Developments in Industrial Countries, by S.J. Anjaria, Z. Iqbal, L.L. Perez, and W.S. Tseng. 1981.

6. The Multilateral System of Payments: Keynes, Convertibility, and the International Monetary Fund’s Articles of Agreement, by Joseph Gold. 1981.

7. International Capital Markets: Recent Developments and Short-Term Prospects, 1981, by a Staff Team Headed by Richard C. Williams, with G.G. Johnson. 1981.

8. Taxation in Sub-Saharan Africa. Part I: Tax Policy and Administration in Sub-Saharan Africa, by Carlos A. Aguirre, Peter S. Griffith, and M. Zühtü Yücelik. Part II: A Statistical Evaluation of Taxation in Sub-Saharan Africa, by Vito Tanzi. 1981.

9. World Economic Outlook: A Survey by the Staff of the International Monetary Fund. 1982.

10. International Comparisons of Government Expenditure, by Alan A. Tait and Peter S. Heller. 1982.

11. Payments Arrangements and the Expansion of Trade in Eastern and Southern Africa, by Shailendra J. Anjaria, Sena Eken, and John F. Laker. 1982.

12. Effects of Slowdown in Industrial Countries on Growth in Non-Oil Developing Countries, by Morris Goldstein and Mohsin S. Khan. 1982.

13. Currency Convertibility in the Economic Community of West African States, by John B. McLenaghan, Saleh M. Nsouli, and Klaus-Walter Riechel. 1982.

14. International Capital Markets: Developments and Prospects, 1982, by a Staff Team Headed by Richard C. Williams, with G.G. Johnson. 1982.

15. Hungary: An Economic Survey, by a Staff Team Headed by Patrick de Fontenay. 1982.

16. Developments in International Trade Policy, by S.J. Anjaria, Z. Iqbal, N. Kirmani, and L.L. Perez. 1982.

17. Aspects of the International Banking Safety Net, by G.G. Johnson, with Richard K. Abrams. 1983.

18. Oil Exporters’ Economic Development in an Interdependent World, by Jahangir Amuzegar. 1983.

19. The European Monetary System: The Experience, 1979–82, by Horst Ungerer, with Owen Evans and Peter Nyberg. 1983.

20. Alternatives to the Central Bank in the Developing World, by Charles Collyns. 1983.

21. World Economic Outlook: A Survey by the Staff of the International Monetary Fund. 1983.

22. Interest Rate Policies in Developing Countries, by the Research Department of the International Monetary Fund. 1983.

23. International Capital Markets: Developments and Prospects, 1983, by Richard Williams, Peter Keller, John Lipsky, and Donald Mathieson. 1983.

24. Government Employment and Pay: Some International Comparisons, by Peter S. Heller and Alan A. Tait. 1983. Revised 1984.

25. Recent Multilateral Debt Restructurings with Official and Bank Creditors, by a Staff Team Headed by E. Brau and R.C. Williams, with P.M. Keller and M. Nowak. 1983.

26. The Fund, Commercial Banks, and Member Countries, by Paul Mentré. 1984.

27. World Economic Outlook: A Survey by the Staff of the International Monetary Fund. 1984.

International Monetary Fund, Washington, D.C. 20431, U.S.A.

Telephone number 202 473 7430

Cable address: Interfund

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  • Fryal, Edward J.,The Eurodollar Conundrum,” Federal Reserve Bank of New York, Quarterly Review (New York), Vol. 7 (Spring 1982), pp. 1119.

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  • Goodman, Laurie, and Nancy Worth,The Future of Commercial Banks in LDC Financing,The Bankers Magazine (Boston), Vol. 164 (November/December 1981), pp. 7883.

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  • Group of Thirty, Risks in International Banking: First Report of the International Banking Study Group (New York, 1982).

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  • Guth, Wilfried,International Banking: The Next Phase,The Banker (London), Vol. 131 (October 1981).

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  • Heller, H. Robert,Managing International Indebtedness,in International Lending in a Fragile World Economy, Financial and Monetary Policy Studies, Vol. 7, ed. by Donald E. Fair and Raymond Bertrand, Société Universitaire Européenne de Recherches Financières (The Hague: Martinus Nijhoff, 1983).

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  • International Bank for Reconstruction and Development, Borrowing in International Capital Markets (Washington, various issues).

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  • Johnson, G. G., with Richard K. Abrams, Aspects of the International Banking Safety Net, Occasional Paper No. 17 (Washington: International Monetary Fund, May 1983).

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  • Joint Ministerial Committee of the Boards of Governors of the Bank and the Fund on the Transfer of Real Resources to Developing Countries (Development Committee), Non-Concessional Flows to Developing Countries, Report of the Task Force (Washington, May 1982).

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  • McNamar, Richard T.,Statement,in World Debt Situation: Hearing, U.S. Congress, Senate, Committee on Foreign Relations, Subcommittee on International Economic Policy, 9th Congress, 2nd Session, September 27, 1982 (Washington: U.S. Government Printing Office, 1983), pp. 3152, and in U.S. Department of the Treasury, Treasury News (Washington), September 27, 1982.

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  • Morgan Guaranty Trust Company of New York, “The Limited Role of the IMF,World Financial Markets (New York, April 1982).

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  • Muller, H. J.,Changes in Banking Supervision and Their Consequences for Banks,in Bank Management in a Changing Domestic and International Environment: The Challenge of the Eighties, Financial and Monetary Studies, Vol. 6, ed. by D. E. Fair and F. Leonard de Juvigny, Société Universitaire Européenne de Recherches Financières (The Hague: Martinus Nijhoff, 1982).

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  • Nowzad, Bahrain, Richard C. Williams, and others, External Indebtedness of Developing Countries, Occasional Paper No. 3 (Washington: International Monetary Fund, 1981).

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  • Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, External Debt of Developing Countries: 1982 Survey (Paris: OECD, 1982).

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  • Williams, Richard C., and others, International Capital Markets: Recent Developments and Short-Term Prospects, 1981, Occasional Paper No. 7 (Washington: International Monetary Fund, 1981).

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