Christine Lagarde urges cautions as central banks withdraw from key regions - Macleans.ca
 

Christine Lagarde urges cautions as central banks withdraw from key regions


 

JACKSON HOLE, Wyo. – The head of the International Monetary Fund cautioned the world’s major central banks Friday not to withdraw their unconventional support for weak economies too soon.

IMF Managing Director Christine Lagarde said stimulative policies are still needed in key regions, especially Europe and Japan, which have struggled with prolonged weakness.

She is addressing the Federal Reserve’s annual conference in Jackson Hole, Wyo.

Lagarde said central banks must carefully develop strategies for scaling back their efforts to keep borrowing rates low. Any pullback should be determined by the strength of individual economies, she said.

Her comments come as the Fed is signalling that it could slow its bond purchases later this year if the U.S. economy continues to improve. The Fed’s bond buying has helped keep U.S. interest rates near record lows.

“Unconventional monetary policy is still needed in all places it is being used, albeit longer for some than for others,” Lagarde said in her speech to the conference.

The anticipation of a slowdown in Fed bond buying has unsettled U.S. stock and bond markets and sent interest rates up. Rising U.S. rates have, in turn, triggered turmoil in some emerging economies, such as Turkey, India and Indonesia. Officials in those countries have tried to halt declines in the value of their currencies as investors have shifted money into higher-yielding investments elsewhere.

Lagarde took note of the market declines that have followed Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke’s signal in June that the Fed could begin slowing its bond purchases later this year if the U.S. economy strengthens further.

She said finance officials should prepare contingency plans in case market turbulence worsens.

Some investors think the Fed could announce at its next meeting in September that it’s reducing its bond purchases. But comments from Fed officials at Jackson Hole suggested some disagreement within the central bank over the proper timing for a slowdown to begin.

Dennis Lockhart, president of the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta, suggested in an interview with CNBC that he might be ready to endorse a bond-buying slowdown in September. But James Bullard, president of the St. Louis Fed, said he thought the economy remains too uncertain for a pullback next month.

“I don’t think we have to be in any hurry,” Bullard said in a separate interview with CNBC. “I think we want to take our time and assess what is going on.”

Bullard is a voting member of the Fed’s interest rate panel this year. Lockhart takes part in discussions but doesn’t have a vote this year. Their remarks mirrored the divided opinion that was evident in the minutes of the Fed’s July meeting released this week.

In her speech, Lagarde said the support being provided by major central banks is buying time for nations to implement key economic reforms.

“Push ahead with deeper reforms to lay the foundation for durable and lasting growth,” Lagarde said. “Do not waste the space provided by unconventional monetary policies.”

For example, she said troubled nations in Europe must repair their financial systems before credit can start flowing normally again.

Lagarde said some emerging market countries have taken steps to prepare for the shocks that could occur as the United States and other major economies withdraw their extraordinary support and borrowing rates rise to historically normal levels. But she said more work would be needed.

She said the IMF will provide support where possible, including emergency loans to countries that need them.


 
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Christine Lagarde urges cautions as central banks withdraw from key regions

  1. The head of the International Monetary Fund IS ONE OF THE TRIBE..THE same tribe who got expelled from over 100 nations for some reason.

    USURY, DEBT AND SATANISM is against Lord Jesus Christ. The TRIBE depends on the blood, sweat, tears and corpses of non-Jews as sacrifices for the New World Order. A system where the Tribe, like the IMF, control all of the world’s capital and profit from the debt of their selected servants. According to some historians, the world population could be reduced to at least 500 million people. Sadly, 6.5 billion people are unaware that the TRIBE is causing a huge worldwide economic depression and leading nations to war world 3 which makes the Middle East war, WW2 and WW1 look like a street fight.

    • Curious, It’s time to switch to decafe.

  2. Lagarde is nothing but an EU patsy. She used to be France’s Minister of Finance. She should have told the truth that the Euro is unsustainable. But no, she has brought Greece to its knees rather than tell the EU Commission its monetary policy is unworkable.

    • I would argue that Greece was on its knees, and worse, Euro or not, but otherwise what you say is exactly correct. And if the EU does implement fiscal union to go along with monetary union, it will be an even more colossal failure. The EU concept as it presently exists is simply unworkable. The precursor to the EU – the Common Market – started out as a means to eliminate trade and investment barriers on the Continent. It became a monstrosity. Time to slay the monster and start respecting national sovereignty again.