Posted on May 29, 2014 by iMFdirect
By Holger van Eden
Most economists would agree that institutions in general are incredibly important in helping to shape countries’ overall economic and fiscal outcomes. But which institutions really matter, and to what extent, is less clear.
A team of staff at the IMF recently completed a study, along with detailed country evaluations, that explores the G-20 countries’ efforts to strengthen their budget institutions in the wake of the global financial crisis, and evaluates their impact on fiscal policy. We ask whether strong budget institutions helped these countries to cope with the substantial fiscal consolidation needs that arose after the Great Recession. The evidence suggests that these institutions have indeed been important.
Budget institutions matter
In the study we identify 12 institutions (see figure1) that are commonly viewed as important for the effectiveness of fiscal policy. To be clear, the term “institution” is used in a broad sense—it encompasses processes, procedures, systems, legal frameworks, and organizational entities which contribute to the budget process.
Filed under: Advanced Economies, Emerging Markets, Europe, Finance, Financial Crisis, Fiscal policy, International Monetary Fund, Reform | Tagged: budget institution, budget preparation, fiscal reporting, G-20 | Leave a comment »
Posted on January 23, 2014 by iMFdirect
By José Viñals
Brisbane and Basel may be 10,000 miles apart, but when it comes to financial regulation the two cities will be standing cheek by jowl.
At the next summit of the Group of Twenty advanced and emerging economies, to be held in Brisbane in November, political leaders will take the pulse of the global financial regulatory reform agenda, launched five years ago. The explicit goal of the Australian G-20 presidency is to finally complete these essential reforms. As Prime Minister Tony Abbott said today in Davos, “Financial regulation is always a work-in-progress, but these reforms now need to be finalized in ways that promote confidence without eliminating risk.”
I strongly support this extra push to create a safer financial system that can better support the needs of the real economy, and better protect taxpayers. For far too long, critics have been able to portray the G-20 reform agenda as a regulatory supertanker stuck in the shallow waters of technical complexity, financial industry pushback, and diverging national views. This image is increasingly off the mark.
Filed under: Economic Crisis, Economic outlook, Employment, Europe, Financial Crisis, Fiscal policy, G-20, growth, IMF, International Monetary Fund, Politics | Tagged: Basel III, Ben Bernanke, Davos, economic reform, European Union, Financial Stability Board, G-20, global financial system, Japan, José Viñals, U.S. Fed, United Kingdom, United States, United States Federal Reserve | 3 Comments »
Posted on June 1, 2011 by iMFdirect
Nemat Shafik, who took over as IMF Deputy Managing Director in April, says she has been surprised by the vigor of internal policy debate at the IMF. “From the outside looking in, you have the impression that the IMF is a monolith with a very single-minded view of the world. When you are inside the Fund, what is really striking is how active the internal debate is,” she says.
At a time when the global economy is being buffeted by continued uncertainty in Europe, uprisings in the Middle East, and signs of overheating in some emerging market economies, there’s a lot to discuss. And, in addition to global economic problems, the IMF’s work environment has come under increased scrutiny, in particular how women are treated and its professional code of conduct.
In an interview, Ms. Shafik discusses some of these issues Continue reading
Filed under: Africa, Europe, G-20, IMF, International Monetary Fund, LICs, Low-income countries, Middle East | Tagged: Africa, allegations, commodity prices, diversity, economic growth, Egypt, emerging economies, euro zone crisis, G-20, gender, global economy, global imbalances, Greece, IMF, International Monetary Fund, low-income countries, membership, Middle East, mutual assessment, Nemat Shafik, New York Times, overheating, policy, Portugal, poverty, recovery, recruitment, spillover, spillover reports, Tunisia, women | 1 Comment »
Posted on April 21, 2011 by iMFdirect
Finance ministers and central bank governors from around the world, gathering at the Spring Meetings of the IMF and World Bank in Washington last week, identified a slew of continued and emerging risks to the global economy, including higher food and fuel prices, the disaster in Japan, unrest in the Middle East, lingering unemployment in parts of the world, and the risk of overheating in some dynamic emerging markets.
With the recovery solidifying but still fragile, ministers put the spotlight on how to strengthen the IMF’s surveillance—its economic assessment and analysis—to help countries take the action needed to address risks and avoid future crises. Continue reading
Filed under: Annual Meetings, Economic Crisis, Financial Crisis, IMF, International Monetary Fund | Tagged: commodity prices, G-20, global financial crisis, IMF surveillance, IMF-World Bank Spring Meetings, International Monetary and Financial Committee, multilateral surveillance, overheating, risks, Tharman Shanmugaratnam, unemployment | 2 Comments »
Posted on February 18, 2011 by iMFdirect
Certainly the world did not end in 2008 with the collapse of Lehman and the crisis that followed. But, it didn’t mostly—perhaps only—because extraordinary international policy cooperation helped avert a far worse outcome.
… the G-20 has now to adapt to a new economic environment. It must prove that it is able to coordinate the economic policies of major economies on an ongoing basis.
French G-20 Presidency
G-20 Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors gather in Paris for their first ministerial level meeting of France’s G-20 presidency at a critical juncture Continue reading
Filed under: Economic outlook, Employment, G-20, Global Governance, Globalization, International Monetary Fund, Multilateral Cooperation | Tagged: commodity prices, Dominique Strauss-Kahn, economic recovery, food prices, G-20, G-20 MAP, G-20 mutual assessment process, global imbalances, inequality, international monetary cooperation, international monetary system, John Lipsky, Olivier Blanchard, policy coordination, unemployment | 3 Comments »
Posted on January 4, 2011 by iMFdirect
By John Lipsky
(Version in Español | 中文 | Français | 日本語 | Русский | عربي )
2011 represents a pivotal year for the global economic recovery and for international policy cooperation—as well as for the role of the Fund in addressing these two principal challenges.
With the crisis of 2008-09 receding, and following the unprecedented efforts expended in 2010 developing the outlines of a new, post-crisis world, 2011 will be the year in which post-crisis plans will be implemented, tested, and assessed. If they are deemed to be successful, it will not be an exaggeration to claim that a new model for global economic and financial governance will be under way. If unsuccessful, however, the sense of failure likely would undermine confidence while adding to the formidable list of challenges to be overcome. Continue reading
Filed under: Advanced Economies, Africa, Asia, Economic Crisis, Economic outlook, Employment, Europe, Financial Crisis, Financial regulation, Fiscal policy, Fiscal Stimulus, G-20, Global Governance, Globalization, growth, International Monetary Fund, Latin America, Low-income countries, Middle East, Public debt, recession, 中文, عربي | Tagged: 2011, capital flows, forecast, FSAP, G-20, John Lipsky, look ahead, Seoul | 3 Comments »
Posted on October 25, 2010 by iMFdirect
By Anoop Singh
Continuing my travels through Asia for the launch of our October 2010 Regional Economic Outlook: Asia and Pacific, I am writing to you today from Singapore. In my last post, I focused on the near-term outlook and challenges for Asia. Today, I turn to the key medium-term challenge—the need to rebalance economies in the region away from heavy reliance on exports by strengthening domestic sources of growth. This is against a backdrop of the need to rebalance global growth that was emphasized over the weekend by the ministers of the Group of Twenty industrialized and emerging market countries.
Heavy reliance, arguably over-reliance, on exports is a common challenge across Asia. Yet, the policies to address it will differ among the countries in the region. Much of the public discussion focuses on ways to increase consumption, and this is something the IMF has written about extensively in the past. But the role of investment in rebalancing growth is equally important and something that should not be overlooked. Continue reading
Filed under: Asia, Economic outlook, IMF, International Monetary Fund | Tagged: ASEAN, Asian financial crisis, Association of Southeast Asian Nations, business environment, consumption, economic rebalancing, financial infrastructure, foreign investment, G-20, investment, investment climate, medium-term challenge, newly industrialized economies, private domestic demand, public-private partnerships, rebalance global economy, Regional Economic Outlook: Asia and Pacific | 1 Comment »