Posted on February 25, 2016 by iMFdirect
By Jeff Hayden
(Versions in عربي and Español)
Say “population growth” and many people immediately think of resources under stress. The mind jumps to 19th century scholar Thomas Malthus, who saw population outstripping the food supply, or to Paul Ehrlich, whose 1968 book The Population Bomb warned of global catastrophe from overpopulation.
Filed under: Africa, China, Employment, Fiscal policy, Government, growth, IMF, International Monetary Fund | Tagged: demographics, El Nino, employment, Finance & Development magazine, fiscal policy, inflation, oil prices, population aging, Sub-Saharan Africa, wages, women | Leave a comment »
Posted on November 17, 2015 by iMFdirect
By Jorg Decressin and Prakash Loungani
Devaluation is often part of the remedy for a country in financial trouble. Devaluation boosts the competitiveness of a country’s exports and curtails imports by making them more costly. Together, the higher exports and the reduced imports generate some of the financial resources needed to help the country get out of trouble.
For countries that belong to—and want to stay in—a currency union, however, devaluation is not an option. This was the situation facing several euro area economies at the onset of the global financial crisis: capital had been flowing into these countries before the crisis but much of it fled when the crisis hit.
Filed under: Advanced Economies, Economic outlook, Economic research, Emerging Markets, Employment, Europe, Financial Crisis, Fiscal policy, growth, IMF, Inequality, International Monetary Fund | Tagged: central bank, euro area, spillover, structural reforms, wage moderation, wages | Leave a comment »
Posted on August 28, 2014 by iMFdirect
By Deniz Igan
(Version in Español)
Something unusual happened this year. For the first time in almost ten years, a book by an economist made it to Amazon’s Top 10 list. Thomas Piketty’s Capital in the Twenty-First Century captured the attention of people from all walks of life because it echoed what an increasing number of Americans have been feeling: the rich keep getting richer and poverty in America is a mainstream problem.
The numbers illustrate the troubling reality. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, 1 in 6 Americans—almost 50 million people—are living in poverty. Recent research documents that nearly 40 percent of American adults will spend at least one year in poverty by the time they reach 60. During 1968–2000, the risk was less than 20 percent. More devastatingly, 1 in 5 children currently live in poverty and, during their childhood, roughly 1 in 3 Americans will spend at least one year living below the poverty line.
Filed under: Advanced Economies, Economic outlook, Economic research, Employment, Financial Crisis, Globalization, IMF, International Monetary Fund, Investment, recession, Reform, unemployment | Tagged: economic recovery, education, health care, jobs, labor market, poverty, poverty reduction, recession, rich and poor, tax, U.S., United States, wages | Leave a comment »
Posted on March 20, 2014 by iMFdirect
By Dennis Botman and Zoltan Jakab
(Version in 日本語)
Japan’s economic progress over the past year has been impressive, with strong growth, and inflation, investment, and credit growth all heading in the right direction. But that progress is largely the result of last year’s sizable fiscal and monetary stimulus—the first two arrows of “Abenomics”. Now, the economy needs to transition to more sustainable, private-sector led growth. A hike in wages could be just the push needed to propel that shift.
As the ongoing annual wage-bargaining round draws to a close, total earnings are set to increase this year for employees at some well-known car manufacturers. But, in the past, these increases have not trickled down to higher basic wages at small and medium-sized enterprises and to non-regular workers. This is problematic as higher inflation without higher incomes can hardly be characterized as a successful reform.
Filed under: Advanced Economies, Asia, Economic research, Employment, Finance, growth, International Monetary Fund | Tagged: Abenomics, consumpt, deflation, investment, Japan, wages | Leave a comment »
Posted on January 28, 2013 by iMFdirect
by David Moore
Latvia’s economy has attracted international attention out of all proportion to its size. Many observers know that Latvia returned to strong economic growth after a severe downturn in 2008 and 2009 and a tough austerity program. In late 2012, Latvia even repaid the IMF in full, several years early.
But the international consensus ends there. Critics of Latvia’s economic strategy point to continuing high rates of unemployment and poverty; advocates point to the benefits of frontloading spending cuts and tax increases to lay the foundations for recovery.
Filed under: Economic Crisis, Employment, Europe, Fiscal policy, Fiscal Stimulus, growth, IMF, International Monetary Fund | Tagged: credit, economic policy, economic reform, Economics, euro, growth, IMF, iMFdirect, International Monetary Fund, Latvia, poverty, unemployment, wages | 2 Comments »
Posted on October 25, 2012 by iMFdirect
By Luis Cubeddu and Sebastián Sosa
(Version in Español)
World food prices are on the rise again owing mainly to global weather-related shocks. This has led to concern that the rise could result in higher inflation and hurt the most vulnerable.
Two points to note are that the recent increase in food prices has been less acute than the two previous episodes (in mid-2008 and early 2011), and features important differences across commodities. For example, while the price of soybeans, corn and wheat are up sharply, coffee and sugar prices are down. Market projections suggest that corn, soy, and wheat prices will stay high through end-2012, but then decline gradually as supply conditions normalize.
Filed under: Africa, Economic Crisis, Economic outlook, Economic research, Emerging Markets, Employment, Fiscal policy, Globalization, growth, IMF, Inequality, Investment, Latin America, Politics | Tagged: Brazil, Caribbean, Central America, coffee, commodities, corn, fertilizer, food prices, iMFdirect, inflation, seeds, South America, Southern Cone, soybeans, sugar, wages, wheat | 2 Comments »