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Tag Archives: United Kingdom

Chart of the WeekLow Internet Access Driving Inequality

By Mercedes García-Escribano COVID-19 and the Great Lockdown triggered a mass migration from analog to digital and highlighted that access to the Internet is crucial for socioeconomic inclusion. High-speed Internet is key for working from home, for children’s education when they can’t attend school in person, for telemedicine, for benefiting from social support programs, and for enabling access to financial services for everyone, especially for those living in remote areas. The digital...

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COVID-19 Pandemic and the Caribbean: Navigating Uncharted Waters

By Krishna Srinivasan, Sònia Muñoz, and Varapat Chensavasdijai Español, Français As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to spread across the globe—bringing severe human and economic costs—the Caribbean is no exception. With over 1,000 confirmed cases, many countries have taken strong containment measures, such as border closures and lockdowns, to “flatten the curve.” But the “sudden stop” in tourism is sharply slowing economic activity in the Caribbean, and growth in the region is projected to...

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Chart of the weekGlobal Uncertainty Related to Coronavirus at Record High

By Hites Ahir, Nicholas Bloom, and Davide Furceri The coronavirus continues to spread. As more countries impose quarantines and social distancing, the fear of contagion and income losses is increasing uncertainty around the world. A new measure of uncertainty related to pandemics and other disease outbreaks finds that uncertainty around the coronavirus is exceptionally high and is much higher than in past outbreaks. To quantify uncertainty related to the coronavirus crisis and compare it...

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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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New Data on World Debt: A Dive into Country Numbers

By Marialuz Moreno Badia and Paolo Dudine Español, Português The new update of the IMF’s Global Debt Database shows that total global debt (public plus private) reached US$188 trillion at the end of 2018, up by US$3 trillion when compared to 2017. The global average debt-to-GDP ratio (weighted by each country’s GDP) edged up to 226 percent in 2018, 1½ percentage points above the previous year. Although this was the smallest annual increase in the global debt ratio since 2004, a closer look...

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Chart of the WeekThe Threat of Inequality of Opportunity

By Shekhar Aiyar and Christian Ebeke There are clashing views on the relationship between income inequality and growth. Some have pointed to at least some measure of inequality as a necessary outcome of the rewards to innovation and risk-taking. Others have argued that excessive income inequality depresses investment in both human and physical capital, two key sources of long-term growth. In recent research we argue that the crucial missing link in the inequality-growth relationship is...

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Taming the Currency Hype

By Gustavo Adler, Luis Cubeddu, and Gita Gopinath Escalating trade tensions are taking a toll on the global economy and are partly responsible for the recent downward revisions to our growth forecasts for 2019-20. Facing sluggish growth and below-target inflation, many advanced and emerging market economies have appropriately eased monetary policy, yet this has prompted concerns over so-called beggar-thy-neighbor policies and fears of a currency war. In this blog post, we discuss the...

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Sluggish Global Growth Calls for Supportive Policies

By Gita Gopinath عربي, 中文, Español, Français, 日本語, Português, Русский In our July update of the World Economic Outlook we are revising downward our projection for global growth to 3.2 percent in 2019 and 3.5 percent in 2020. While this is a modest revision of 0.1 percentage points for both years relative to our projections in April, it comes on top of previous significant downward revisions. The revision for 2019 reflects negative surprises for growth in emerging market and developing...

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Rebalancing the Global Economy: Some Progress but Challenges Ahead

By Gita Gopinath Español, 日本語 Following the global financial crisis, overall current account surpluses and deficits fell sharply from about 6 percent of global GDP in 2007 to about 3.5 percent in 2013. Since then, as shown in our new External Sector Report, global current account imbalances have declined only slightly to 3 percent of world GDP in 2018, while rotating toward advanced economies and away from emerging economies, including China whose current account is now broadly in line with...

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A Global Picture of Public Wealth

By Jason Harris, Abdelhak Senhadji, and Alexander F. Tieman Español, Português Our new data on government assets shows that when governments know what they own, they can make better use of the assets for the well-being of all their citizens.  We make these data free and publicly available for all to use because we believe transparency can help create better public policy.  The chart shows that advanced economies have larger balance sheets compared to emerging markets and low-income...

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