When History Rhymes

2019-03-13T12:16:56-04:00November 5, 2018|

By Christine Lagarde

November 5, 2018

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The graves of soldiers who died in World War I, near Verdun, France: on the 100th anniversary of the end of the Great War, leaders should listen closely to the echoes of history (photo: Mathieu Pattier/SIPA/Newscom)

Mark Twain once said that “History never repeats itself, but it does often rhyme.” As heads of state gather in Paris this week to mark 100 years since the end of World War I, they should listen closely to the echoes of history and avoid replaying the discordant notes of the past. […]

The Financial System Is Stronger, but New Vulnerabilities Have Emerged in the Decade Since the Crisis

2019-03-13T12:46:35-04:00October 9, 2018|

By Tobias Adrian

October 10, 2018

عربي, 中文, Español, Français, Baˈhasa indoneˈsia, 日本語PortuguêsРусский

Debt owed by governments, companies and households in economies with globally systemically important financial sectors has risen since the global financial crisis (Photo: Richard B. Levine/Newscom)

Although the global expansion has plateaued, easy monetary policies continue to support growth. But we shouldn’t rest too easily. Chapter 1 of the latest Global Financial Stability Report finds that short-term risks to the financial system have increased somewhat over the past six months. […]

Chart of the Week: The Digital Divide in Asia

2019-03-13T14:03:53-04:00September 25, 2018|

By IMFBlog

September 25, 2018

Young people on their phones in Phnom Pehn, Cambodia: about 70 percent of the country does not have internet access and can’t participate in the digital economy (Samrang Pring/Reuters/Newscom)

The countries of Southeast Asia are young—more than half of its 643 million people are under 30— and together they live in an economy of $2.8 trillion. […]

Asia Needs More Access to Financial Services to Grow

2019-03-13T14:26:34-04:00September 18, 2018|

By  Sarwat Jahan, Elena LoukoianovaCormac Sullivan and Yongzheng Yang

September 18, 2018

中文, 日本語

A customer pays at a supermarket using her smartphone in Bangkok, Thailand: urban and rural areas in the region widely use mobile payment platforms to access financial services (photo: Li Mangmang Xinhua News Agency/Newscom)

In Asia, the world’s fastest-growing region, expanding access to financial services for more people will mean higher growth, as well as lower poverty and inequality. […]

Trade and Remittances Within Africa

2019-03-13T15:29:35-04:00August 1, 2018|

By Francisco Arizala, Matthieu Bellon, Margaux MacDonald, Montfort Mlachila, and Mustafa Y. Yenice

August 1, 2018 

Versions in FrançaisPortuguês

Countries in sub-Saharan Africa are more closely tied than ever, thanks to rising trade with one another and remittances (photo: AfricaImages/Getty Images by iStock)

Contrary to popular belief, countries in sub-Saharan Africa are more closely tied than ever, thanks to rising trade with one another and remittances—the money people send home when working in another country.  […]

Trust and the Future of Multilateralism

2019-03-14T11:54:36-04:00May 10, 2018|

By David Lipton

May 10, 2018
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Where trust exists and is reciprocated—where there is “confidence” in policies, institutions and systems—economies will achieve more (photo: iStock by Getty Images).

We live in an era of doubts and questions about the global order.  We have seen an erosion of trust in bedrock institutions—political parties, national governments, regional authorities, and among international trade and investment partners. […]

Addressing the Dark Side of the Crypto World

2019-03-15T09:34:57-04:00March 13, 2018|

By Christine Lagarde

March 13, 2018

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

The same reason crypto-assets like Bitcoin are so appealing is also what makes them dangerous (iStock by GettyImages).

Whether Bitcoin’s value goes up or Bitcoin’s value goes down, people around the world are asking the same question: What exactly is the potential of crypto-assets?

The technology behind these assets—including blockchain—is an exciting advancement that could help revolutionize fields beyond finance. It could, for example, power financial inclusion by providing new, low-cost payment methods to those who lack bank accounts and in the process empower millions in low-income countries. […]

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