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Florian Misch, Mr. Brian Olden, Mr. Marcos Poplawski Ribeiro, and Lamya Kejji
Traditionally, fiscal data for policy analysis are derived from official reports that, depending on the country, are published either monthly, quarterly or annually, often with significant time lags. However, innovations in digitalization of government payments and accounting systems mean that real-time daily fiscal data exist in many countries. In this paper, we argue that these data contain valuable, but underutilized and underexploited information. Possible uses include (i) realtime fiscal surveillance which allows for much more timely responses to emerging signs of fiscal stress, and (ii) nowcasting economic activity, which is especially useful in countries where higher frequency GDP statistics are unavailable.
Mr. Johannes Wiegand
When the euro was introduced in 1998, one objective was to create an alternative global reserve currency that would grant benefits to euro area countries similar to the U.S. dollar’s “exorbitant privliege”: i.e., a boost to the perceived quality of euro denominated assets that would increase demand for such assets and reduce euro area members’ funding costs. This paper uses risk perceptions as revelaed in investor surveys to extract a measure of privilege asscociated with euro membership, and traces its evolution over time. It finds that in the 2000s, euro area assets benefited indeed from a significant perceptions premium. While this premium disappeared in the wake of the euro crisis, it has recently returned, although at a reduced size. The paper also produces time-varying estimates of the weights that investors place on macro-economic fundmentals in their assessments of country risk. It finds that the weights of public debt, the current account and real growth increased considerably during the euro crisis, and that these shifts have remained in place even after the immediate financial stress subsided.
International Monetary Fund
In light of the multilateral effort to ensure the adequacy of the financial resources available to the International Monetary Fund (the “Fund”), and with a view to supporting the Fund’s ability to provide timely and effective balance of payments assistance to its members, the Bank of Slovenia agrees to lend to the Fund an SDR-denominated amount up to the equivalent of EUR 280 million, on the terms and conditions set out in this paper.
International Monetary Fund. Statistics Dept.

Abstract

International Financial Statistics provides a complete library of continuously updated international statistics on all aspects of international and domestic finance. The monthly print edition contains over 1,000 pages of statistical data in each issue. It reports, for most countries of the world, current data needed in the analysis of problems of international payments and of inflation and deflation, i.e., data on exchange rates, international liquidity, money and banking, interest rates, prices, production, international transactions, government accounts, and national accounts. Information is presented in country tables and in tables of area and world aggregates.

Ms. Susan M Schadler

Abstract

Eight central and eastern European countries--the Czech Republic, Estonia, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Slovak Republic, and Slovenia--officially joined the European Union (EU) in May 2004. This auspicious milestone marked the beginning of the next major step for these countries in their move toward full integration with the EU-adoption of the euro. Seeking to consider the opportunities and challenges of euro adoption, the papers in this volume--by a noted group of country officials, academics, representatives of international institutions, and market participants-offer insight on the various dimensions of euro adoption in these eight new EU members--how they should prepare, whether an early move is optimal, and what pitfalls may occur along the way.

Ms. Katerina Smídková and Mr. Ales Bulir
Estimation and simulation of sustainable real exchange rates in some of the new EU accession countries point to potential difficulties in sustaining the ERM2 regime if entered too soon and with weak policies. According to the estimates, the Czech, Hungarian, and Polish currencies were overvalued in 2003. Simulations, conditional on large-model macroeconomic projections, suggest that under current policies those currencies would be unlikely to stay within the ERM2 stability corridor during 2004-10. In-sample simulations for Greece, Portugal, and Spain indicate both a much smaller misalignment of national currencies prior to ERM2, and a more stable path of real exchange rates over the medium term than can be expected for the new accession countries.
Mr. George Kopits
In view of the requirements of Stage 2 of European Monetary Union (EMU) for accession to the European Union, this paper examines the desirability for, and the ability of, the lead candidates in Central and Eastern Europe to participate in the new exchange rate mechanism (ERM2) and eventually in EMU. For most of these countries the benefits are likely to outweigh the cost of participation. After successfully meeting the basic conditions (wage flexibility, prudent fiscal and monetary stance, financial system soundness) for ERM2, each candidate should be able to shadow the euro, with sufficient flexibility around the central rate, prior to formal participation. The paper concludes with a discussion of two policy dilemmas.
International Monetary Fund
This paper reviews economic developments in Bosnia and Herzegovina during 1990–95. It describes the monetary arrangements that have evolved in the Federation and Republika Srpska, and summarizes the financial developments. The paper provides an overview of balance-of-payments developments and the external financing requirements associated with the authorities’ priority reconstruction program. It describes the exchange rate and trade systems of the two Entities. An assessment of macroeconomic statistics in Bosnia and Herzegovina and a summary of IMF technical assistance activities are also provided.