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    As Fed Tapers, More Central Bank Independence Needed

    This week finance ministers and central bank officials from around the world will converge on Washington for the spring meetings of the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund. Discussions of monetary policy normalization are leading this year’s expansive schedule. One notable item missing from the agenda is discussion of … More

    How Conservatives Win

    It should come as no surprise The New York Times would bury news of a conservative victory over President Obama on page 8. The lead paragraph said it all: Senate Democrats, bowing to united House Republican opposition, dropped reforms of International Monetary Fund governance from a Ukraine aid package on … More

    Harry Reid Tried to Push Conservatives Into Accepting This Policy. Why He Didn't Succeed.

    After a two-week standoff with Republicans, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid has decided to drop controversial provisions in the aid package for Ukraine. The Senate was locked in a stalemate over the Obama administration’s proposed changes to the International Monetary Fund. The provisions had the support of Reid (D-Nev.) and … More

    Ted Cruz Leads GOP's Fight Against IMF Expansion in Ukraine Aid Package

    Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D–Nev.) is facing a revolt among Republicans for adding controversial language to an aid package for Ukraine. The Senate is expected to vote on the Ukraine measure next week. The controversial provisions, which have support of the Obama administration and liberals from both parties, would … More

    Treasury Is Misinforming the American Public about Ukraine and IMF Reforms

    A U.S. Treasury Department spokesperson blogged last week about “Why IMF Quota and Governance Reforms are Urgently Needed” and implied that opponents of President Obama’s campaign to demand that Congress link passage of International Monetary Fund (IMF) reforms to any U.S. help for Ukraine are guilty of spreading “myths.” In … More

    IMF Package to Ukraine Should Include Real Economic Reforms

    International Monetary Fund (IMF) officials beat the U.S. to the punch this week, arriving to discuss economic aid to Ukraine one day earlier than U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry. While Kerry promised $1 billion in loan guarantees from the U.S., the IMF is working on a $15 billion loan … More

    Don’t Hit Snooze on the Debt

    The national debt is a few years away from an unprecedented peacetime explosion, according to the Congressional Budget Office (CBO). Without serious fiscal restraint, public debt will reach 80 percent of gross domestic product (GDP) in 2022 and then explode to 190 percent of GDP in 2038, around the time … More

    Brazil Turns Away from Capital Controls

    Last week, Brazil announced that it is finally eliminating its most prominent tax on foreign portfolio investment. This reversal is the most recent reminder of the negative effects of capital controls. Capital controls are measures, sometimes in the form of taxes or fees, that limit the movement of capital into … More

    Egypt: Too Big to Fail?

    As President Obama visits Israel, one of the biggest elephants in the room is the ongoing financial crisis just across the desert in Egypt. Since the Arab Spring uprising, Egypt’s economy has deteriorated. The country’s most immediate crisis is a foreign reserve shortage. Stocks of the country’s foreign currency reserves … More

    Argentina’s Terrible Week: IMF Censure, Price Controls, and Court Rulings

    Argentina’s government is having a terrible week. The bad week started when the nation was censured by the International Monetary Fund (IMF) on February 1 for cooking the statistical books and underreporting the rampant inflation devouring Argentineans’ and foreign investors’ money—to the tune of $6.8 billion. Unless the nation cleans … More