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International Monetary Fund. External Relations Dept.
The Web edition of the IMF Survey is updated several times a week, and contains a wealth of articles about topical policy and economic issues in the news. Access the latest IMF research, read interviews, and listen to podcasts given by top IMF economists on important issues in the global economy. www.imf.org/external/pubs/ft/survey/so/home.aspx
International Monetary Fund. External Relations Dept.

On December 5, IMF management told the Executive Board that it could not at present recommend the completion of the latest review of Argentina’s IMF-supported program. Completion of the review would have allowed Argentina to draw a further $1.3 billion from the IMF. The IMF remains in close contact with the Argentine authorities and is committed to working with them to develop a sustainable economic program.

International Monetary Fund. External Relations Dept.

IMF First Deputy Managing Director Anne Krueger unveiled a groundbreaking plan on November 26 that could give countries with unsustainable debts legal protection from their creditors while they negotiate with them. In a speech at the National Economists’ Club in Washington, she noted a “gaping hole” in the international financial system. “At the moment”, she said, “too many countries with insurmountable debt problems wait too long, imposing unnecessarily heavy economic costs on themselves and on the international community that has to help pick up the pieces” (see the IMF’s website at www.imf.org for the full text of her speech).

International Monetary Fund. External Relations Dept.

The SDR interest rate and the rate of remuneration are equal to a weighted average of interest rates on specified short-term domestic obligations in the money markets of the five countries whose currencies constitute the SDR valuation basket. The rate of remuneration is the rate of return on members’ remunerated reserve tranche positions. The rate of charge, a proportion of the SDR interest rate, is the cost of using the IMF’s financial resources. All three rates are computed each Friday for the following week. The basic rates of remuneration and charge are further adjusted to reflect burden-sharing arrangements. For the latest rates, call (202) 623-7171 or check the IMF website (www.imf.org/cgi-shl/bur.p?2001).

International Monetary Fund. External Relations Dept.

On November 28, the IMF Executive Board agreed to release $3.1 billion to Turkey as part of a $19 billion loan package. The funds were due to be released in late September, but were delayed by the need to assess the repercussions on the Turkish economy of the September 11 terrorist attacks. The IMF had approved a three-year Stand-By Arrangement for Turkey in December 1999 totaling $4 billion. It made additional financial resources available to the country under the Supplemental Reserve Facility in December 2000 and under the credit tranches in May 2001. (The full text of News Brief No. 01/121 is available on the IMF’s website at www.imf.org.)

International Monetary Fund. External Relations Dept.

Despite stable flows of foreign direct investment, annual net capital flows to emerging markets appear to have turned negative in 2001 for the first time in more than a decade. The sharp drop in net flows from a peak of $230 billion in 1996 has sparked questions not just about the future but also about the past. One of the most intriguing is, “just what did happen in the 1990s?” Should the boom years of the previous decade be viewed as a cyclical phenomenon, linked in large measure to an upsurge in economic activity in the mature markets, or as a structural change, a one-off adjustment in portfolios after the emerging markets’ “lost decade” of the 1980s? The IMF’s latest quarterly Emerging Market Financing report examines key features of the financing flows and weighs the evidence for the structural and cyclical arguments.

International Monetary Fund. External Relations Dept.

Spurred by the financial crises of recent years in emerging markets, the international community has been exploring ways to prevent crises and resolve more quickly the ones that do occur. Improved communication between investors and creditors looks to be a key—in particular, the recent advent of investor relations programs being pursued by a number of countries and global corporations.

International Monetary Fund. External Relations Dept.

Professor Dale Jorgenson of Harvard University came to the IMF Institute with a message. Economists need to grasp the extent to which the information technology (IT) revolution has changed the world and their profession. He talked with IMF Institute Senior Economist Alicia Jimenez about that revolution and what policymakers need to know about its impact on the economy.