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Tag Archives: Japan

Structural Factors and Central Bank Credibility Limit Inflation Risks

By Gita Gopinath After ending last year with unexpectedly strong vaccine success and hope that the pandemic and economic distress it caused would recede, we woke up to the reality of new virus variants and the unpredictable, winding road that it can lead the world down. Something similar has happened with the discourse on inflation. At the end of last year, after a historic collapse of the global economy estimated at -3.5 percent, inflation was below target in 84 percent of countries. This...

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A Race Between Vaccines and the Virus as Recoveries Diverge

By Gita Gopinath عربي, 中文, Español, Français, 日本語,  Português, Русский  In just three months since we released our last forecast in October, recorded COVID-19 deaths have doubled to over 2 million, as new waves have lifted infections past previous peaks in many countries. In these same three months, multiple vaccines have seen unexpectedly strong success and some countries have started ambitious vaccination drives. Much now depends on the outcome of this race between a mutating virus and...

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Guilt, Gender, and an Inclusive Recovery: A Lesson from Japan

By Chie Aoyagi Japan’s voluntary month-and-a-half shutdown of the economy in April due to COVID-19 has had a higher cost for women than men. A key reason: a “guilt gap” between women and men, where women often feel compelled to take on more professional sacrifices. Close to one million women—the majority of whom worked in temporary and part-time positions—left the labor force between December and April. Amid massive disruptions to childcare and schools, research in an IMF Working Paper has...

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Chart of the WeekTracking the $9 Trillion Global Fiscal Support to Fight COVID-19

By Bryn Battersby, W. Raphael Lam, and Elif Ture Governments have put forward swift and significant emergency lifelines to protect people in response to the pandemic. We measured these in the April 2020 Fiscal Monitor and as countries have stepped up their efforts, we have updated the numbers. The upward revision was largely because of a second wave of measures by governments as the economic fallout from the pandemic proves more severe. So, where does the global fiscal support stand now?...

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A Post-Coronavirus Recovery in Asia—Extending a “Whatever it Takes” Lifeline to Small Businesses

By Kenneth Kang and Changyong Rhee عربي, 日本語 Asia was hit hard by the first wave of the coronavirus, as the sudden stop in activity struck households and firms simultaneously—first in China, then elsewhere in Asia, and now globally. Policymakers responded swiftly with aggressive spending to support the medical response and vulnerable households and firms. And central banks took swift actions to expand liquidity. While this helped support financial markets and sentiment, we may be on the...

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A Global Crisis Like No Other Needs a Global Response Like No Other

By Kristalina Georgieva عربي, Português I have been saying for a while that this is a “crisis like no other.” It is: More complex, with interlinked shocks to our health and our economies that have brought our way of life to an almost complete stop; More uncertain, as we are learning only gradually how to treat the novel virus, make containment most effective, and restart our economies; and Truly global. Pandemics don’t respect borders, neither do the economic shocks they...

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The Great Lockdown: Worst Economic Downturn Since the Great Depression

By Gita Gopinath عربي, 中文, Español, Français, 日本語, Português The world has changed dramatically in the three months since our last update of the World Economic Outlook in January. A rare disaster, a coronavirus pandemic, has resulted in a tragically large number of human lives being lost. As countries implement necessary quarantines and social distancing practices to contain the pandemic, the world has been put in a Great Lockdown. The magnitude and speed of collapse in activity that has...

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Monetary and Financial Stability During the Coronavirus Outbreak

By Tobias Adrian This blog is part of a special series on the response to the coronavirus. The global spread of the coronavirus is a human tragedy unfolding across the world. Quantifying the economic impact is complex, giving rise to significant uncertainty about the economic outlook and the associated downside risks. Such an abrupt rise in uncertainty can put both economic growth and financial stability at risk. In addition to targeted economic policies and fiscal measures, the right...

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A Call for Vigilance After a Strong Year for Risky Assets

By Tobias Adrian and Fabio Natalucci عربي, 中文, Español, Français While we have seen some recent volatility, many risky asset markets around the world had a spectacular year in 2019. Equity market indices were up just over 30 percent in the United States, close to 25 percent in Europe and China, and over 15 percent in emerging markets and Japan. Emerging-market sovereign debt, U.S. high-yield debt, and emerging-market corporate debt all had returns in excess of 12 percent. Remarkably, the...

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Reduce Inequality To Create Opportunity

By Kristalina Georgieva عربي, Español, 中文, Français, Português, Русский Over the past decade, inequality has become one of the most complex and vexing challenges in the global economy. Inequality of opportunity. Inequality across generations. Inequality between women and men. And, of course, inequality of income and wealth . They are all present in our societies and—unfortunately— in many countries they are growing. The good news is we have tools to address these issues, provided we...

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