Executive Directors welcomed the opportunity to complete the review of the Fund’s Policy on Multiple Currency Practices (MCPs). They observed that MCPs can be distortionary, create unfair competitive advantage among countries, and hamper trade and investment, particularly over the medium and long term. They agreed that the MCP policy should remain a cornerstone of the Fund’s legal and policy framework to ensure orderly exchange arrangements and a stable system of exchange rates. They welcomed the adjustments to the policy to reflect developments since the last review in the 1980s so that it does not discourage good practices in FX markets and is better aligned with the Fund’s other policies (including the policy on exchange restrictions and the Institutional View on the Liberalization and Management of Capital Flows (IV)), while ensuring that it continues to address policy actions that are considered impermissible under the new policy.
International Monetary Fund. Monetary and Capital Markets Department, International Monetary Fund. Research Dept., International Monetary Fund. Strategy, Policy, & Review Department, and International Monetary Fund. Legal Dept.
In February 2019, the Executive Board considered staff’s preliminary proposals for reforming the IMF’s policy on multiple currency practices (MCPs) and supported the majority of the proposals. The Board expressed strong support for re-focusing the policy on official action that segments foreign exchange markets, eliminating the concept of potentiality, and replacing the current fixed two-percent rule for identifying MCPs for spot transactions with a country-specific market-based norm and tolerance margin that would apply uniformly across the membership for both spot and non-spot transactions. The Board also supported staff’s proposals regarding the other elements of the new methodology to identify MCPs, the treatment of illegal parallel markets, excluding broken cross-rates from the scope of the policy, and the linkages with the Institutional View on the Liberalization and Management of Capital Flows. The paper outlines operational considerations to address noncompliance and to ensure a smooth transition. It is proposed to enhance the current cooperative approach to addressing noncompliance by increasing transparency and accountability.
International Monetary Fund. Finance Dept., International Monetary Fund. Legal Dept., and International Monetary Fund. Strategy, Policy, & Review Department
This paper provides the basis for the quinquennial review by the Executive Board of the method of valuation of the Special Drawing Right (SDR). The review covers the composition and weighting of the SDR currency basket, and the financial instruments used to determine the SDR interest rate. In the five-year period for this review (2017‒21), developments in key variables relevant for the SDR valuation suggest that there have been no major changes in the roles of currencies in the world economy. The countries and the currency union (euro area) whose currencies are currently included in the SDR basket remain the five largest exporters and their currencies continue to account for the majority of international financial transactions. Moreover, staff analysis finds that the COVID-19 pandemic and recent fintech developments have no systematic or material impact on the SDR valuation. The paper proposes to maintain the current composition of the SDR currency and interest rate baskets, as well as the method for determining the currency weights and currency amounts in the basket. In line with the Board-approved methodology, the paper proposes updated weights for the currencies in the SDR basket. These maintain the same ranking of the initial weights set in the 2015 review, with slightly higher weights for the U.S. dollar and the Chinese renminbi and, accordingly, somewhat lower weights for the British pound, the euro, and the Japanese yen. The paper also proposes to make explicit the treatment of data gaps in the SDR valuation framework. Findings from a survey of SDR department participants and prescribed holders are used to follow up on operational issues raised in earlier valuation reviews. The new SDR valuation and interest rate baskets are proposed to come into effect on August 1, 2022 for a period of five years.