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iMFdirect
iMFdirect features views by IMF economists and officials about pressing issues in the global economy. The views expressed are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily represent the views of the IMF and its Executive Board.

iMFdirect

A Firming Recovery

By Maurice Obstfeld July 24, 2017 A building in Tokyo, Japan. The global recovery is on a firmer footing, with growth revised up for Japan, the euro area, China, and for emerging and developing economies more generally (photo: Issei Kato/Reuters/Newscom) The recovery in global growth that we projected in April is on a firmer footing; there is now no question mark over the world economy’s gain in momentum. As in our April forecast, the World Economic Outlook Update projects  3.5...

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Uganda’s Recipe for Growth

By IMFBlog July 21, 2017 Construction worker in Uganda (photo: James Akena/Reuters/Newscom) After two decades of steady growth, Uganda’s economy has slowed, and life for Ugandans is not improving fast enough. Drought in the Horn of Africa, regional conflict, and slow credit growth have contributed to this decline, with per capita growth falling to ½ percent from an average of 5 percent for the past 20 years. In this podcast, the IMF’s Mission Chief for Uganda, Axel Schimmelpfennig,...

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IMF Support for the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals

By Stefania Fabrizio, Roland Kpodar and Chris Lane July 19, 2017 Schoolchildren in line in Mali: Reducing the large gap between men’s and women’s education in some low-income states is one of the 2030 goals which IMF advice can address. (Photo © Stringer/Reuters/Newscom) Since the adoption of the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in 2015, we at the IMF have supported countries to reach their goals through policy advice, training, and financial support. Results...

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Chart of the Week: A Golden Aging for Vietnam?

By IMFBlog July 17, 2017  A worker in a silk factory in Dalat, Vietnam. Encouraging more women to join the workforce and shifting to higher productivity occupations will help the country overcome the impact of an aging population (photo: Gerhard Zwerger-Schoner/imageBroker/Newscom) Vietnam’s demographic dividend is fast turning into a handicap. For decades, working-age Vietnamese made up an expanding share of the population, boosting economic growth and helping to keep retirement and...

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Corrosive and Costly Corruption

By IMFblog July 14, 2017  Corruption can hurt growth and ruin people’s economic chances (photo: Eugene Keebler/iStock) Corruption can lead to pervasive distrust in government, generating violence, civil strife, and conflict. And the results are devastating for people. Another problem is that corruption is costly—particularly for those who are already worse off. IMF research shows that in countries with greater levels of corruption, infant mortality and dropout rates are especially...

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What We Have Seen and Learned 20 Years After the Asian Financial Crisis

By Mitsuhiro Furusawa July 13, 2017 Versions in 中文 (Chinese), Русский (Russian), and Español (Spanish) A trader in Seoul, South Korea: Asia is the largest contributor to global growth (photo: Ryu Seung-il/Polaris/Newscom) Asia today is the fastest-growing region in the world, and the largest contributor to global growth. It has six members of the Group of Twenty advanced and emerging economies, and its economic and social achievements are well recognized. But 20 years ago, July 1997...

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Peer Pressure: Tax Competition and Developing Economies

By Michael Keen and Jim Brumby July 11, 2017 A salesman checks an iphone in New Delhi, India: governments compete to attract investors with low corporate tax rates (photo: Adnan Abidi/Reuters/Newscom) Economists tend to agree on the importance of competition for a sound market economy. So, what’s the problem when it comes to governments competing to attract investors through the tax treatment they provide? The trouble is that by competing with one another and eroding each other’s...

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Chart of the Week: Norway’s Home-Price Boom

By IMFBlog July 10, 2017  A crane looms over the city of Oslo, Norway: Constraints on new construction limit the supply of housing, driving up prices (photo: Ingram Publishing/Newscom) Think Londoners and New Yorkers have it bad when it comes to sky-high house prices? Residents of Oslo have reason to gripe, too. House prices in the Norwegian capital are among the world’s highest, as measured by the average cost of a home relative to household median income. Prices in Oslo are perhaps...

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Transparency Pays: Emerging Markets Share More Data

By Sangyup Choi and Stephanie Medina Cas July 7, 2017 On the move in Mexico City, Mexico: emerging market economies that are transparent with their data can lower their borrowing costs (photo: Edgard Garrido/Reuters/Newscom) If sunlight is the best disinfectant, as US Supreme Court Justice Louis Brandeis once famously said, can it also be a money maker? We have tried to quantify the financial gains from greater transparency that emerging market countries can achieve. Our new...

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No Time to Stand Still: Strengthening Global Growth and Building Inclusive Economies

By Christine Lagarde July 5, 2017 Versions in عربي (Arabic), 中文 (Chinese), Français (French), Русский (Russian), and Español (Spanish) The port of Hamburg, Germany: G20 leaders meet to discuss policies to strengthen the global economic recovery (photo: Markus Lange/robertharding/Newscom) Nearly sixty years ago, a little-known band called the Beatles arrived in Hamburg, got a haircut, recorded their first song, and found their sound. Taking a cue from the Fab Four, world leaders...

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