Posted on May 31, 2016 by iMFdirect
By Jeff Hayden
Strong performance by many African economies over the past two decades led some commentators to coin the term “Africa Rising” to describe the region’s surging economic power.
The term graced the cover of TIME magazine in December 2012, in an issue that chronicled the region’s decades-long journey from economic anemia to impressive vigor. Beginning in the mid-1990s, many—but certainly not all—countries in sub-Saharan Africa energized their economies, achieving in recent years some of the world’s highest growth. Living standards improved as a result, as did health care and other key services, inspiring hope for a bright future.
Filed under: Africa, Fiscal policy, Government, growth, IMF, International Monetary Fund, Investment | Tagged: Africa, health care, IMF, infrastructure, International Monetary Fund, Nigeria, technology, United States, Women in the Workforce | Leave a comment »
Posted on May 11, 2016 by iMFdirect
By Yan Carrière-Swallow and Bertrand Gruss
(Versions in Español and Português)
Falling global commodity prices and the normalization of monetary policy in the United States have contributed to widespread currency depreciations in Latin America. In theory, a falling currency is expected to create inflation by driving up the price of imported goods and services—triggering what economists call exchange rate pass-through.
Filed under: Advanced Economies, banking, inflation, International Monetary Fund, Latin America | Tagged: advanced economies, central banks, Diálogo a Fondo, exchange rate pass-through, exchange rate regimes, IMF, inflation, inflation targeting, infrastructure, International Monetary Fund, Latin America, monetary policy, wages | Leave a comment »
Posted on April 19, 2016 by iMFdirect
Public capital—road, bridges, electricity—can make countries richer by attracting more investment and building economic growth at a time when many are struggling with low growth. Many economists would argue public investment projects in highly efficient countries tend to have a greater impact on growth. New research by IMF economists shows that’s not necessarily the case. Continue reading
Filed under: Advanced Economies, Africa, Asia, Caribbean, China, Economic research, growth, IMF, International Monetary Fund, Latin America, LICs, Low-income countries | Tagged: Andy Berg, infrastructure, public spending | Leave a comment »
Posted on January 28, 2016 by iMFdirect
By Antoinette Sayeh
(Versions in Español, Français, and Português)
The sub-Saharan Africa region is facing severe shocks associated with the steep decline in commodity prices and tightening global financial conditions. Against this background, it’s a good time to look back at the region’s recent growth experience and examine the relationship between growth rates and competitiveness. The extent to which sub-Saharan African companies are able to compete against their foreign competitors (that is, the extent to which they are competitive) could indeed play a role in sustaining growth going ahead.
Filed under: Africa, Economic outlook, growth, International Monetary Fund, trade | Tagged: Africa, commodity exports, competitiveness, development, exchange rates, growth, IMF, infrastructure, labor force, Regional Economic Outlook: Sub-Saharan Africa, Sub-Saharan Africa | Leave a comment »
Posted on October 22, 2015 by iMFdirect
By Sonali Jain-Chandra, Kalpana Kochhar, and Monique Newiak
(Versions in عربي, 中文, Français, 日本語, Русский, and Español)
Despite progress, wide gaps between women and men’s economic empowerment and opportunity remain, which policymakers need to tackle urgently. In most countries, more men than women work, and they get paid more for similar work. Also, there are considerable gender gaps in access to education, health and finance in a number of countries. There is mounting evidence that the lack of gender equity imposes large economic costs as it hampers productivity and weighs on growth.
Our new study analyzes the links between these two phenomena—inequality of income and that of gender. We find that gender inequality is strongly associated with income inequality across time and countries of all income groups.
Filed under: Economic Crisis, Economic outlook, Economic research, Emerging Markets, Employment, Fiscal policy, Globalization, IMF, Inequality, International Monetary Fund, Reform | Tagged: developing economies, education, empowering women, gender wage gap, Germany, income inequality, India, inequality, infrastructure, Japan, labor force, tax policy, women labor force participation | Leave a comment »
Posted on September 15, 2015 by iMFdirect
By Ratna Sahay, Martin Cihak, Papa N’Diaye, Adolfo Barajas, and Srobona Mitra
(Version in Français, Español, عربي)
A growing number of policymakers see financial inclusion—greater access to financial services throughout a country’s population—as a way to promote and make economic development work for society. More than 60 countries have adopted national financial inclusion targets and strategies. Opening bank accounts for all in India and encouraging mobile payments platforms in Peru are just two examples. Evidence for individuals and firms suggests that greater access to financial services indeed makes a difference in investment, food security, health outcomes, and other aspects of daily life. Our study looks at the benefits to the economy as a whole.
Filed under: Advanced Economies, Economic research, Emerging Markets, Finance, Financial regulation, Fiscal policy, growth, IMF | Tagged: banks, economic growth, finance, financial inclusion, growth, India, inequality, infrastructure, Middle East, Peru, United States, women | Leave a comment »
Posted on July 20, 2015 by iMFdirect
By David Lipton
Why have businesses in advanced economies not been investing more in machinery, equipment and plants? Business investment is the largest component of private investment, and its weakness has puzzled many of us.
Some believe that the key to more business investment is less uncertainty about fiscal policy, regulation, and structural reforms. Some believe that it is providing better financing, including for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs).
Filed under: Advanced Economies, Economic outlook, Economic research, Emerging Markets, Fiscal policy, growth, IMF, International Monetary Fund, Investment, Public debt | Tagged: David Lipton, fiscal policy, infrastructure, investment, monetary policy, public investment, recession, World Economic Outlook | Leave a comment »