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The spectacle of U.S. politicians pushing the country to the brink of default is likely to have lingering effects on global financial markets and hence on development, the eleventh-hour compromise notwithstanding. In the near-term, however, the main issue is the U.S. economic slump and the increased likelihood that the world’s biggest economy will fall back into recession.
Recently the Latin American Shadow Financial Regulatory Committee (CLAAF), over which I preside, held its bi-annual meeting at CGD and issued its 24th statement. Among the CLAAF members that participated were several renowned economists, including Guillermo Calvo, Carmen Reinhart, Pablo Guidotti, Guillermo Ortiz and Roque Fernandez.
The Financial Times published my letter to the editor last week responding to Gillian Tett’s article “Will sovereign debt be the new subprime?” I elaborated on the risks of increasing public debt in the U.S. and other developed countries, and warned that mere perception of an excessive supply of sovereign debt can reduce the real value of that debt. Here’s my letter:
On Monday, October 5, IMF Managing Director Dominique Strauss-Kahn and Princess Maxima of the Netherlands, an international development advocate and the UN Special Advocate for Inclusive Finance for Development, launched the IMF’s new Access to Finance Project at
For many developing countries, the U.S. credit crisis will mean slower growth and rising inequality. The effects will be protracted, and not all will show up at the same time. And the nature and degree of impact will vary widely. Some countries, notably those with extensive foreign exchange reserves and strong fiscal positions, will be much better able to cope than others. But overall the crisis is very bad news for developing countries and especially for the poor.