Estimating Cyber Risk for the Financial Sector

2018-06-26T16:12:14+00:00June 22nd, 2018|

By Christine Lagarde

June 22, 2018

Versions in  عربي,  中文,  Español, Français, Baˈhasa indoneˈsia日本語Português, Русский 

Average annual losses to financial institutions from cyber-attacks could reach a few hundred billion dollars a year (photo: Eti Ammos/iStock by Getty Images)

Cyber risk has emerged as a significant threat to the financial system. (more…)

Chart of the Week: Japan’s Robots

2018-06-14T09:13:48+00:00June 12th, 2018|

By IMFBlog

June 12, 2018

Version in 中文, 日本語

A Panasonic robot moves around the lounge of Tokyo's Narita International Airport (photo: Yoshio Tsunoda/AAFLO/Alamy Live News)

As Japan’s population ages and the birth rate is too low to sustain growth, the country is no stranger to coping with a limited number of working age people.  (more…)

Chart of the Week: The Rise of Corporate Giants

2018-06-26T15:32:07+00:00June 6th, 2018|

By Federico J. Díez and Daniel Leigh

June 6, 2018

Versions in  中文Español, Français日本語,  PortuguêsРусский 

The market power of “superstar” companies in advanced economies is growing (photo: iStock by Getty Images)

The growing economic wealth and power of big companies—from airlines to pharmaceuticals to high-tech companies—has raised concerns about too much concentration and market power in the hands of too few. (more…)

Chart of the Week: Greenery and Prosperity

2018-05-24T13:46:56+00:00May 21st, 2018|

By João Tovar Jalles and Prakash Loungani

May 21, 2018

Versions in  中文, Español, Français, 日本語,  Português 

Brandenburg, Germany: in three advanced economies—Germany, the United Kingdom, and France—emissions have fallen despite the increase in incomes (photo: Caro / Kaiser/Newscom).

Economic growth has traditionally moved in tandem with pollution. But can countries break this link and manage to grow while lowering pollution?

(more…)

Mapping Income Polarization in the United States

2018-05-23T11:52:21+00:00May 15th, 2018|

By Ali Alichi and Rodrigo Mariscal

May 15, 2018

Versions in EspañolPortuguês

Investment in education an important countervailing force in addressing income inequality (photo: Istock by Getty Images).

When it comes to income inequality among American households, outcomes have varied widely across the 50 U.S. states.  The impact of international competition gets a lot of the blame, along with automation, in states that have fared the worst. (more…)

Volatility Strikes Back

2018-05-03T09:03:17+00:00May 3rd, 2018|

By Sergei Antoshin, Fabio Cortes, Will Kerry and Thomas Piontek

May 3, 2018 

Investors who bet on continued low volatility suffered steep losses (photo: Richard B. Levine/Newscom).

The bouts of volatility in early February and late March that spooked investors were confined to equity markets. Nevertheless, they illustrate the potential for sudden market moves to expose fragilities in the financial system more broadly.

With central banks in advanced economies set to normalize their monetary policies just as trade and geopolitical tensions flare up, economic and policy uncertainty may rise and financial conditions may tighten abruptly. (more…)

Technology and the Future of Work

2018-05-31T15:13:35+00:00May 1st, 2018|

By Adrian Peralta, and Agustin Roitman

May 1, 2018 

Versions in  عربي (Arabic), baˈhasa indoneˈsia(Indonesian), 中文 (Chinese), Español (Spanish), 日本語 (Japanese), Português (Portuguese), Русский (Russian)

Technology impacts how we work (photo: BSIP/Newscom).

Many feel anxious about the impact of new technology on their jobs. This is not new. In fact, it dates back at least to the Luddites movement at the outset of the Industrial Revolution. And it resurfaced during the Great Depression and again in the 1960s, following a period of high productivity growth, and in the 1980s at the outset of the IT revolution.

How can governments help? By investing in peoples’ skills. (more…)

Bringing Down High Debt

2018-04-19T13:01:08+00:00April 18th, 2018|

By Vitor Gaspar and Laura Jaramillo

April 18, 2018

Versions in عربي (Arabic), 中文 (Chinese),  Español (Spanish), Français (French), 日本語 (Japanese), Português (Portuguese), Русский (Russian)

High debt makes governments’ financing vulnerable to sudden changes in market sentiment (photo: NYSE-LUCAS JACKSON-REUTERS Newscom).

Global debt hit a new record high of $164 trillion in 2016, the equivalent of 225 percent of global GDP. Both private and public debt have surged over the past decade. High debt makes government’s financing vulnerable to sudden changes in market sentiment. It also limits a government’s ability to provide support to the economy in the event of a downturn or a financial crisis.

Countries should use the window of opportunity afforded by the economic upswing to strengthen the state of their fiscal affairs. The April 2018 Fiscal Monitor explores how countries can reduce government deficits and debt in a growth-friendly way.

(more…)

Global Economy: Good News for Now but Trade Tensions a Threat

2018-04-24T14:20:27+00:00April 17th, 2018|

By Maurice Obstfeld

April 17, 2018

Versions in عربي (Arabic),  baˈhasa indoneˈsia (Indonesian), 中文 (Chinese), Español (Spanish), Français (French), 日本語 (Japanese), Português (Portuguese), Русский (Russian)

Container ship in Colombo, Sri Lanka: the recent escalating tensions over trade present a growing risk to the global economy (photo: STRINGER/REUTERS/Newscom).

The world economy continues to show broad-based momentum. Against that positive backdrop, the prospect of a similarly broad-based conflict over trade presents a jarring picture.

Three months ago, we updated our global growth forecast for this year and next substantially, to 3.9 percent in both years. That forecast is being borne out by continuing strong performance in the euro area, Japan, China, and the United States, all of which grew above expectations last year. We also project near-term improvements for several other emerging market and developing economies, including some recovery in commodity exporters. Continuing to power the world economy’s upswing are accelerations in investment and, notably, in trade. (more…)

An Even-handed Approach to Crypto-Assets

2018-04-20T10:55:27+00:00April 16th, 2018|

By Christine Lagarde

April 16, 2018

Versions in  عربي (Arabic), 中文 (Chinese),  Español (Spanish), Français (French), 日本語 (Japanese), Português (Portuguese), Русский (Russian)

Healthcare companies are studying how to use the technology behind crypto assets to maintain confidential medical data (BSIphotos/Newscom).

The dizzying gyrations of crypto-assets such as Bitcoin invite comparisons with the tulip mania that swept Holland in the 17th century and the recent dot-com bubble. With more than 1,600 crypto-assets in circulation, it seems inevitable that many will not survive the process of creative destruction.

In my blog last month, I looked at the dark side of crypto-assets, including their potential use for money laundering and the financing of terrorism. Here, I want to examine the promise they offer. A judicious look at crypto-assets should lead us to neither crypto-condemnation nor crypto-euphoria. (more…)

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