Posted on October 26, 2015 by iMFdirect
By Rabah Arezki, Adnan Mazarei, and Ananthakrishnan Prasad
(Versions in عربي and 中文)
As a result of the oil price plunge, the major oil-exporting countries are facing budget deficits for the first time in years. The growth in the assets of their sovereign wealth funds, which were rising at a rapid rate until recently, is now slowing; some have started drawing on their buffers.
In the short run, this phenomenon is not cause for alarm. Most oil exporters have enough buffers to withstand a temporary drop in oil prices. But what will happen if low oil prices persist, and how will policymakers react?
Filed under: Advanced Economies, Asia, Economic Crisis, Economic outlook, Economic research, Emerging Markets, Fiscal policy, growth, IMF, Inequality, International Monetary Fund, Investment, Middle East | Tagged: GCC, Kuwait, MENA, Middle East, oil exporters, oil prices, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, sovereign funding, sovereign wealth funds, U.S. Federal Reserve, U.S. monetary policy, United Arab Emirates | Leave a comment »
Posted on October 15, 2015 by iMFdirect
According to Plato, you do not really know something unless you can give an account of it. Otherwise, you have just an opinion and not real knowledge. The seminars that took place during the IMF’s Annual Meetings in Lima, Peru would have made Plato proud.
Our editors deployed their pens and notepads and brought back these themes and highlights.
Filed under: Advanced Economies, Annual Meetings, Asia, Economic outlook, Emerging Markets, Financial Crisis, Globalization, IMF, Inequality, International Monetary Fund, Latin America | Tagged: Climate change, commodity prices, economic growth, emerging markets, energy subsidies, financial inclusion, fiscal policy, IMF/World Bank Annual Meetings, oil prices, Peru, structural reforms | Leave a comment »
Posted on August 31, 2015 by iMFdirect
For a man who declared on his arrival at the IMF “I do not blog,” Olivier Blanchard, our soon-to-be former Chief Economist, is one hell of a blogger.
Prolific and popular. A demi-god: half economist, half artist. Blanchard writes the way he thinks: sharp, frank, and intellectual, while pushing against the edges of his métier with the creativity and honesty of a singular economist.
Filed under: Advanced Economies, Economic Crisis, Economic outlook, Emerging Markets, Europe, Financial Crisis, Fiscal policy, International Monetary Fund, Multilateral Cooperation | Tagged: Greece, IMF Annual Research Conference, IMF chief economist, jobs, Latvia, macroeconomic policy, oil prices, Olivier Blanchard | 1 Comment »
Posted on August 10, 2015 by iMFdirect
Ever wonder to what extent Russia depends on oil revenues—and what happens to such an economy when crude prices fall by half? Or what the tangible effects are of sanctions when a country falls out of favor with its trading partners?
Well the IMF’s latest annual assessment of Russia’s economy shows cheap oil and sanctions together have helped drag the country into a recession.
Filed under: Advanced Economies, Economic outlook, Economic research, Europe, Globalization, International Monetary Fund | Tagged: advanced economies, economic growth, Europe, global economy, oil prices, Russia | Leave a comment »
Posted on May 20, 2015 by iMFdirect
By José Viñals
Financial market liquidity can be fleeting. The ability to trade in assets of any size, at any time and to find a ready buyer is not a given. As discussed in some detail last fall in this blog, a number of factors, including the evolving structure of financial markets and some regulations appear to have pushed liquidity into a new realm: markets look susceptible to episodes of high price volatility where liquidity suddenly vanishes.
In our April 2015 Global Financial Stability Report we identify a new aspect to the problem: asset price correlations have risen sharply in the last five years across all major asset classes (see figure). Continue reading
Filed under: Advanced Economies, Emerging Markets, Europe, Finance, IMF, International Monetary Fund | Tagged: bond markets, central banks, euro area, exchange rate, Financial regulation, GFSR, Global Financial Stability Report, Japan, market liquidity, market volatility, monetary policy, oil prices, swap lines, Switzerland, U.S. Fed, United States | Leave a comment »
Posted on May 18, 2015 by iMFdirect
By Sanjeev Gupta and Michael Keen
(Versions in 中文, Français, 日本語, Русский and Español)
In their blog, Ben Clements and Vitor Gaspar make the points that global energy subsidies are still very substantial, that there is a strong need for reform in many countries, and that now is a great time to do it. This blog sets out what we mean by “energy subsidies,” provides details on their estimation, and explains how they continue to be high despite the recent drop in international energy prices (Chart 1).
Our latest update of global energy subsidies shows that “pre-tax” subsidies—which occur when people and businesses pay less than it costs to supply the energy—are smaller than a few years back. But “post-tax” subsidies—which add to pre-tax subsidies an amount that reflects the environmental, health and other damage that energy use causes and the benefit from favorable VAT or sales tax treatment—remain extremely high, and indeed are now well above our previous estimates.
Filed under: Finance, Globalization, IMF, International Monetary Fund, Reform | Tagged: Chile, energy price reform, energy prices, energy subsidies, environmental impact, European Commission, fossil fuels, oil prices, tax cuts, the United Kingdom, United States | Leave a comment »