Business and Economics > Finance: General

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Mr. Johannes Herderschee and Ms. Luisa Zanforlin
Whereas most of the literature related to the so-called “resource curse” tends to emphasize on institutional factors and public policies, in this research we focus on the role of the financial sector, which has been surprisingly overlooked. We find that countries that have financial systems with more depth, as well as those that actively manage their central banks’ balance sheets experience less exchange-rate appreciation than countries that do not. We analyze the relationship between these two findings and suggest that they appear to follow separate mechanisms.
Mr. Montfort Mlachila and Rasmané Ouedraogo
Why do commodity-dependent developing countries have typically lower levels of financial development than their peers? The literature has proposed many possible explanations, but it typically does not dwell on the deep mechanisms that drive such an outcome. In this paper, we argue that the main cause is the shocks in commodity prices. We test the hypothesis on 68 commodity-rich developing countries between 1980 and 2014, and we find strong evidence of the financial development resource curse through the channel of commodity price shocks, after controlling for other explanations found in the literature. The findings are robust to the different types of commodities, the nature of the shocks, and various indicators of financial development. We also show how the impact of these shocks can be mitigated through good quality of governance.
International Monetary Fund. Fiscal Affairs Dept.

Abstract

This issue of the Fiscal Monitor examines the conduct of fiscal policy under the uncertainty caused by dependence on natural resource revenues. It draws on extensive past research on the behavior of commodity prices and their implications for macroeconomic outcomes, as well as on extensive IMF technical assistance to resource-rich economies seeking to improve their management of natural resource wealth.

International Monetary Fund. Middle East and Central Asia Dept.
The countries in the Caucasus and Central Asia (CCA) have recorded significant macroeconomic achievements since independence. These countries have grown more rapidly-—on average by 7 percent over 1996–2011—-than those in many other regions of the world and poverty has declined. Inflation has come down sharply from high rates in the 1990s and interest rates have fallen. Financial sectors have deepened somewhat, as evidenced by higher deposits and lending. Fiscal policies were broadly successful in building buffers prior to the global crisis and those buffers were used effectively by many CCA countries to support growth and protect the most vulnerable as the crisis washed across the region. CCA oil and gas exporters have achieved significant improvements in living standards with the use of their energy wealth.
International Monetary Fund. External Relations Dept.
This paper examines the policy implications of structural changes in financial markets. Domestic financial markets have become less segmented, and the major financial centers more integrated. At the same time, the structural changes in financial markets have improved efficiency by lowering intermediation costs, increasing the ability to hedge financial risks associated with currency, interest rate, and price volatility and opening up access to new sources of savings. The widespread application of computer and telecommunications technology to financial markets has permitted markets to process a significantly larger volume of transactions.