Posted on May 4, 2015 by iMFdirect
By Ratna Sahay, Martin Čihák, and Papa N’Diaye
The world still lives in the shadow of the global financial crisis that began in the United States in 2008. The U.S. experience shone a spotlight on the dangers of financial systems that have grown exponentially and beyond traditional banks. It triggered a rethinking of the extent and speed of the expansion of a country’s financial sector, and raised questions about which policies promote a safe financial system.
In our new study, we emphasize that the most commonly used indicator—bank credit—is not sufficient to measure the size and scope of a country’s financial development. We create a comprehensive index for over 170 countries to answer several policy questions from the perspective of emerging markets.
Filed under: Advanced Economies, Economic Crisis, Economic research, Emerging Markets, Europe, Finance, growth | Tagged: capital markets, Ecuador, emerging market, financial deepening, financial development, financial markets, financial stability, Gambia, growth, Ireland, Japan, liquidity, Morocco, Poland, U.S., United Kingdom, United States | Leave a comment »
Posted on October 20, 2014 by iMFdirect
By Will Kerry and Andrea Maechler
Banks are struggling to overhaul the way they do business given new realities and new regulations adopted in the aftermath of the global financial crisis. While banks are generally stronger—they have more capital—they are less profitable, as measured by the return on equity. There are a number of reasons behind this, including: anemic net income at banks, particularly in the euro area; higher levels of equity; and banks taking fewer risks.
If they cannot change their business models, there is a risk that banks will not be able to provide enough credit to help the economy grow and recover.
Filed under: Advanced Economies, Economic research, Europe, Finance, Financial Crisis, Financial regulation, growth, IMF, International Monetary Fund, Reform | Tagged: banking sector, business model, ECB, economic recovery, equity, euro area, financial markets, Global Financial Stability Report | Leave a comment »
Posted on May 14, 2014 by iMFdirect
By Luc Laeven, Lev Ratnovski, and Hui Tong
Large banks were at the center of the recent financial crisis. The public dismay at costly but necessary bailouts of “too-big-to-fail” banks has triggered an active debate on the optimal size and range of activities of banks.
But this debate remains inconclusive, in part because the economics of an “optimal” bank size is far from clear. Our recent study tries to fill this gap by summarizing what we know about large banks using data for a large cross-section of banking firms in 52 countries.
We find that while large banks are riskier, and create most of the systemic risk in the financial system, it is difficult to determine an “optimal” bank size. In this setting, we find that the best policy option may not be outright restrictions on bank size, but capital—requiring large banks to hold more capital—and better bank resolution and governance.
Filed under: Economic research, Finance, Financial Crisis, Financial regulation, Fiscal, Fiscal policy, Government, International Monetary Fund, Reform | Tagged: banking regulation, banks, big banks, financial markets, Financial regulation, financial stability, Global Financial Stability Report, IMF, iMFdirect, iMFdirect blog, International Monetary Fund, monetary policy | Leave a comment »
Posted on December 18, 2013 by iMFdirect
By Era Dabla-Norris and Kalpana Kochar
(Version in Español)
The era of remarkable growth in many emerging market economies fueled by cheap money and high commodity prices may very well be coming to an end.
The slowdown reflects not just inadequate global demand, but also structural factors that are rendering previous growth engines less effective, and the fact that economic “good times” reduced the incentives to implement further reforms to enhance productivity. With the end of the period of favorable global financing and trade conditions, the time is nigh for governments to make strong efforts to increase productivity—the essential foundation of sustainable growth and rising living standards. Continue reading
Filed under: Asia, Economic research, Emerging Markets, Employment, Finance, Financial regulation, growth, IMF, International Monetary Fund, Latin America | Tagged: emerging markets, employment, financial markets, Financial regulation, financial supervision, growth, iMFdirect, infrastructure, International Monetary Fund, Labor, productivity | 1 Comment »
Posted on April 11, 2013 by iMFdirect
By Erik Oppers
This spring monetary policy is the talk of the town. It is everywhere you look, it’s unique, and you’ve never seen anything quite like it before: short-term interest rates at zero for several years running, and central bank balance sheets swelling with government bonds and other assets in the euro area Japan, the United Kingdom, and the United States.
But the meteoric rise of this once dusty topic can’t last. The end of these unconventional monetary policies will come and may pose threats to financial stability because of the length and breadth of their unprecedented reign. Policymakers should be alert to the risks and take gradual and predictable measures to address them.
Filed under: Advanced Economies, Economic outlook, Economic research, Fiscal policy, International Monetary Fund, Investment | Tagged: banks, bonds, central banks, credit, financial markets, financial stability, Global Financial Stability Report, IMF, iMFdirect, interest rates, International Monetary Fund, Japan, monetary policy, policy, United Kingdom, United States | 1 Comment »
Posted on April 1, 2013 by iMFdirect
By Min Zhu
The economies of small states have unique features. They have relatively higher costs, higher public spending needs, and more volatile economies. And their growth has not matched the improved economic performance of the rest of the world since the late 1990s, despite their many efforts over the years. We wanted a better grasp of why this is so we can better tailor our advice and support. Here is what we found.
Filed under: Asia, Emerging Markets, growth, IMF, International Monetary Fund | Tagged: Caribbean, Climate change, development, financial markets, markets, Min Zhu, small states | Leave a comment »
Posted on January 23, 2013 by iMFdirect
by Olivier Blanchard
Version in Español and عربي
Optimism is in the air, particularly in financial markets. And some cautious optimism may indeed be justified.
Compared to where we were at the same time last year, acute risks have decreased. The United States has avoided the fiscal cliff, and the euro explosion in Europe did not occur. And uncertainty is lower.
But we should be under no illusion. There remain considerable challenges ahead. And the recovery continues to be slow, indeed much too slow.
Filed under: Advanced Economies, Economic Crisis, Economic outlook, Economic research, Emerging Markets, Europe, Fiscal policy, growth, IMF, International Monetary Fund | Tagged: banking union, Brazil, capital flows, China, debt, developing economies, emerging economies, euro area, Europe, European Central Bank, financial markets, fiscal cliff, fiscal consolidation, fiscal crisis, fiscal policy, France, Germany, government bonds, government debt and deficits, growth, IMF, iMFdirect, India, inflation, International Monetary Fund, Italy, Japan, Outright Monetary Transactions, Spain, United States, WEO, World Economic Outlook | 5 Comments »