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International Monetary Fund
This paper discusses about capitalism that is often thought of as an economic system in which private actors own and control property in accord with their interests, and demand and supply freely set prices in markets in a way that can serve the best interests of society. The essential feature of capitalism is the motive to make a profit. In a capitalist economy, capital assets—such as factories, mines, and railroads—can be privately owned and controlled, labor is purchased for money wages, capital gains accrue to private owners, and prices allocate capital and labor between competing uses. Although some form of capitalism is the basis for nearly all economies today, for much of the past century it was but one of two major approaches to economic organization. In the other, socialism, the state owns the means of production, and state-owned enterprises seek to maximize social good rather than profits.
International Monetary Fund. Research Dept.
The Research Summaries in the December 2012 IMF Research Bulletin look at "Market Failures and Macroprudential Policy" (Giovanni Favara and Lev Ratnovski) and "Measurement Matters for House Price Indices" (Mick Silver). The Q&A column looks at "Seven Questions on Turning Points of the Global Business Cycle." The Bulletin also includes a listing of recent IMF Working Papers and Staff Discussion Notes, as well as a list of the top-viewed articles for the first three issues of IMF Economic Review in 2012. Information is also included on a call for papers for the conference "Asia: Challenges of Stability and Growth" to be held in Seoul in 2013.
International Monetary Fund. External Relations Dept.
This paper examines the export performance of developing countries. Taking any recent period, for example the past 15 years, the growth rate in export earnings for individual countries has varied from substantial year-to-year increases to absolute declines. Countries with growth rates as high as 13 percent per year include Greece, Jamaica, and Peru, while at the other end of the spectrum are Bolivia, Paraguay, and Uruguay, whose export earnings declined in absolute terms.