The West African Economic and Monetary Union (WAEMU) regional securities market saw increasing activity in the last decade, but still fell short of supplying sufficient long-term financing for growth-enhancing public and private investment projects. In addition to providing an institutional background, this paper studies recent developments and the determinants of interest rates on the market—using yield curve and principal component analyses. It also identifies challenges and prospective reforms that could help the region reap the full benefits of a more dynamic securities market and assesses the potential systemic risk the market may pose for the region’s banking system.
The paper reviews trends and developments in the rapidly growing local currency debt markets in the WAEMU. The main findings are that common institutions, such as a regional central bank and securities exchange have led to high cross-border transactions within the union. However, excess liquidity in the regional banking system has led to limited credit differentiation among issuers and a reliance on supply and demand conditions as a key determinant of yields. The paper also discusses a number of policy issues, including debt management, that are likely to emerge as the markets for government securities continue to develop.
Sub-Saharan Africa's growth performance during the past three years has been the best in more than three decades, and higher oil revenues and increased debt relief have been used to make progress toward the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). Despite spending pressures, most countries have managed to preserve macroeconomic stability with policies intended to support and sustain the region's higher growth. This latest REO is complemented by analyses on the macroeconomic challenges for oil producers, the changing trade patterns, including with China, and the development of government debt markets.
International Monetary Fund. External Relations Dept.
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This chapter focuses on the special drawing rights (SDR) scheme and the working of the gold exchange standard. This paper discusses the main influences involved in the relationship between SDRs and other reserve assets in a context of future reserve growth and suggests certain general conditions that may be necessary for SDRs to become the predominant source of reserve growth. The central question considered in this paper can be approached by asking in what ways the availability of SDRs as a supplement to other reserve growth should be expected to influence the basic forces operating under the gold exchange standard. The approach requiring the smallest element of international control would be to make the return on SDRs more attractive by comparison with that available on foreign exchange holdings, that is, to raise the SDR interest rate. A substantial increase in this rate would involve several separate considerations, which can be given only summary consideration here.