Posted on February 7, 2017 by iMFdirect
By Sebastian Acevedo
Version in Español (Spanish)
Hurricanes are a fact of life in the Caribbean. Every year there are, on average, 12 storms that pass through the region, of which about half reach hurricane force winds (winds above 119 kilometers per hour). Hurricanes are the leading cause of natural disasters in the Caribbean, making the region one of the most vulnerable in the world. Yet, only 62 percent of disasters caused by hurricanes have recorded data on economic damages, as the information is difficult to collect.
Filed under: Caribbean, climate change, International Monetary Fund, natural disasters | Tagged: Fiscal buffers, GDP, Hurricanes, infrastructure investment, insurance | Leave a comment »
Posted on January 23, 2017 by iMFdirect
By Alejandro Werner
Versions in Português (Portuguese), and Español (Spanish)
The global landscape has changed since our last update in October 2016. These changes have been mainly shaped by:
- An anticipated shift in the U.S. policy mix, higher growth and inflation, and a stronger dollar. In the United States—while potential policy changes remain uncertain—fiscal policy is likely to become expansionary, while monetary policy is expected to tighten faster than previously expected because of stronger demand and inflation pressures. As a result, growth is projected to rise to 2.3 percent in 2017 and 2.5 percent in 2018—a cumulative increase in GDP of ½ percentage point relative to the October forecast. The expected change in the policy mix and growth has led to an increase in global long-term interest rates, a stronger dollar in real effective terms, and a moderation of capital flows to Latin America.
- Improved outlook for other advanced economies and China for 2017–18, reflecting somewhat stronger activity in the second half of 2016 as well as projected policy stimulus.
- Some recovery in commodity prices, especially metal and oil prices, on the back of strong infrastructure and real estate investment in China, expectations of fiscal easing in the United States, and agreement among major petroleum producers to cut supply.
Filed under: Caribbean, Economic outlook, growth, IMF, International Monetary Fund, Latin America, structural reforms | Tagged: Caribbean, Central America, GDP, growth, IMF, iMFdirect blog, infrastructure development, International Monetary Fund, Latin America, regional economic outlook, South America, structural reform | Leave a comment »
Posted on December 21, 2016 by iMFdirect
Terms of trade is the price of a country’s exports relative to its imports. The commodity terms of trade refers to a country’s commodity exports relative to its commodity imports.
When the price of commodities, like oil, plummeted in 2015, economies that rely on exporting commodities had their terms of trade drop by an average of about 10 percent of GDP that year. Economies that rely more on importing commodities saw about a 2 percent of GDP benefit from the 2015 drop in prices. Continue reading
Filed under: commodities, Economic research, IMF, International Monetary Fund, oil, trade, U.S. | Tagged: commodity exporters, commodity importers, commodity prices, GDP, IMF, iMFdirect blog, oil, trade, World Economic Outlook | Leave a comment »
Posted on December 12, 2016 by iMFdirect
By Maurice Obstfeld and Poul M. Thomsen
Versions in عربي (Arabic); Français (French); Deutsch (German); ελληνικά (Greek); and Español (Spanish)
Greece is once again in the headlines as discussions for the second review of its European Stability Mechanism (ESM) program are gaining pace. Unfortunately, the discussions have also spurred some misinformation about the role and the views of the IMF. Above all, the IMF is being criticized for demanding more fiscal austerity, in particular for making this a condition for urgently needed debt relief. This is not true, and clarifications are in order. Continue reading
Filed under: Debt Relief, Europe, Fiscal policy, Greece, IMF, International Monetary Fund | Tagged: austerity, debt, debt relief, debt sustainability, ESM, euro zone, Europe, European Stability Mechanism, financial stability, fiscal policy, GDP, Greece, IMF, iMFdirect blog, International Monetary Fund | Leave a comment »
Posted on December 9, 2016 by iMFdirect
Many countries are experiencing a combination of declining birth rates and increasing longevity. In other words, their populations are aging. And graying populations pose serious issues for people, policymakers, and society. Continue reading
Filed under: Advanced Economies, aging, Europe, growth, health, International Monetary Fund, Japan, jobs, labor force, productivity | Tagged: advanced economies, aging, Europe, GDP, growth, health care, IMF, iMFdirect blog, Japan, labor force, pensions, productivity, TFP, Total Factor Productivity | Leave a comment »
Posted on November 9, 2016 by iMFdirect
Versions in عربي (Arabic), Français (French), and Español (Spanish)
The link between jobs and economic growth is not always a straight line for countries, but that doesn’t mean it’s broken.
Economists track the relationship between jobs and growth using Okun’s Law, which says that higher growth leads to lower unemployment.
New research from the IMF looks at Okun’s Law and asks, based on the evidence, will growth create jobs? The findings show a striking variation across countries in how employment responds to GDP growth over the course of a year. Continue reading
Filed under: Advanced Economies, Economic research, Emerging Markets, Employment, G-20, growth, IMF, International Monetary Fund, jobs, labor force, U.S., unemployment | Tagged: advanced economies, emerging economies, employment, GDP, growth, IMF, iMFdirect blog, infrastructure investment, International Monetary Fund, jobs, labor force, Okun's law, unemployment, United States | Leave a comment »
Posted on October 24, 2016 by iMFdirect
By Florence Jaumotte, Ksenia Koloskova, and Sweta Saxena
Version in Español (Spanish)
Migration, no matter how controversial politically, makes sense economically. A new IMF study shows that, over the longer term, both high- and low-skilled workers who migrate bring benefits to their new home countries by increasing income per person and living standards. High-skilled migrants bring diverse talent and expertise, while low-skilled migrants fill essential occupations for which natives are in short supply and allow natives to be employed at higher-skilled jobs. Moreover, the gains are broadly shared by the population. It may therefore be well-worth shouldering the short-term costs to help integrate these new workers.
Filed under: Advanced Economies, Economic research, Employment, Europe, IMF, Inequality, International Monetary Fund, labor force, Migration, unemployment | Tagged: advanced economies, employment, European migration, GDP, IMF, inequality, International Monetary Fund, labor force, labor productivity, migrants, Migration, nanny effect, public spending, unemployment | Leave a comment »