Tag: IMF

Analysis of the IMF Strategy on Social Spending

Four years have passed since the International Monetary Fund adopted a new
Strategy for Engagement on Social Spending that was meant to increase the
support that IMF gives to national policies on social protection, health and
education. The Fund interprets this as instructing its staff to focus on the
adequacy, efficiency and sustainability of social programs when they can affect
macroeconomic conditions (are “macro-critical”) in member countries. The
staff make their judgments during annual assessments of macroeconomic
conditions in individual countries or when devising policy adjustment
programs with countries that need to work toward recovery from
macroeconomic crises. One way to assess how the new strategy is being
implemented is to look for changes in IMF advice and the policy requirements
for IMF loans. Results so far have not been encouraging, although it is still
early.

Read the article by Barry Herman

Milton Friedman still runs the show at the IMF

“Milton Friedman isn’t running the show anymore,” Joe Biden said in a 2020 campaign interview while pledging to greatly scale up public investment. The comment was striking as the  University of Chicago economist Milton Friedman represents a branch of economics, the Chicago School, that has dominated fiscal policy in Washington for the last four decades.

Yes, but apparently the new policy stops at the US border

Read the article in The Progressive Magazine

Fifty years of failure: the IMF, debt and austerity in Africa

ActionAid’s report ‘Fifty Years of Failure: the IMF, Debt and Austerity in Africa’ is based on new research and powerful personal testimonies from across 10 African countries. It is timed to coincide with the first IMF / World Bank Annual meeting to be held in Africa for 50 years. The report documents how the IMF imposes austerity policies, undermining health, education and wider development across the continent. Rather than seek systemic solutions to the mounting debt crisis in Africa, and rather than exploring obvious alternatives such as progressive tax reforms, the IMF continues to enforce cuts to public spending that hurt women and disadvantaged groups most acutely.

Fifty Years of Failure: The IMF, Debt and Austerity in Africa | ActionAid International

UN Finance for Development Process: the Best Chance for Democratic Economic Governance?

  • As BWIs fail to transform, countries should re-embrace more democratic space at the United Nations
  • UN Financing for Development Conference on horizon, with historic progress on tax cooperation raising hopes on debt

Read the analysis of the Bretton Woods Project

Schizophrenia at the IMF

At long last, the International Monetary Fund has begun to recognize that the best way to reduce sovereign debt is by boosting economic growth, rather than insisting on fiscal retrenchment. But this new understanding is being undermined by a lingering adherence to growth-inhibiting austerity policies.

Schizophrenia at the IMF by Jayati Ghosh – Project Syndicate (project-syndicate.org)

IMF Social Spending Floor: a Fig Leave for Austerity?

The International Monetary Fund has said that it protects spending on education, health and social protection from cuts in its loan programmes through social spending floors. These measures are a welcome step forward, but are they effective?

Analysis of all 17 IMF loan programmes (Extended Credit Facilities, or ECFs, and Extended Fund Facilities, or EFFs) for low- and middle-income countries during the first two years of the pandemic shows that these floors are deeply inadequate, inconsistent, opaque and failing. They are little more than a fig leaf for harmful austerity, which is driving inequality, poverty and suffering.

Read Oxfam‘s Paper

Demystifying Bretton Wood’s discourse on public services

Drawing on the specific case of IMF and World Bank’s response to the multiple crisis triggered by the pandemic, a journal article shows that there is a discourse-practice disjuncture in the Bretton Woods institutions approach to public services as they continue to favour austerity and market-oriented solutions for the delivery of public services. The article therefore seeks to demystify the institutions rhetoric and demand the adoption of a different way of understanding public services, and social policy more broadly.

Read Eurodad’s article

The IMF is about to enforce worldwide austerity

What does Georgieva’s New Year’s message really mean?

Read about it in the article by Matteo Tiratelli