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Sunday, April 22, 2012

Where IMF helping financial markets and US steping back

The International Monetary Fund, armed with a replenished arsenal containing billions of dollars to battle Europe's lingering debt crisis, now must press governments in the eurozone to carry out bold changes to reassure nervous financial markets and avert sending the crisis into a more dangerous phase.
The IMF's final communique Saturday after hours of high-level meetings did not go beyond saying what structural reforms were needed to restore fiscal health and spur economic growth in the 17 countries that use the euro. 
During the weekend meetings of the IMF and its sister institution, the World Bank, finance ministers and central bank governors said the threat of a sharp global slowdown had eased, but still used words like "weak," ''fragile" and "challenging" to describe the outlook for the future.
The major accomplishment of the weekend was the pledge of at least $430 billion from individual countries that will nearly double IMF's reserves available for loans to almost $1 trillion.
 The additional $430 billion in resources was announced by IMF Managing Director Christine Lagarde  following meetings of finance officials of the Group of 20 major economic powers Friday. The United States and Canada were two rich countries that did not make pledges. The United States would face problems winning support for increased support for the IMF and Canada expressed the view that Europe, as a rich continent, had sufficient resources to deal with its debt problems.
 Lagarde said Russia, India, China and Brazil had made private pledges but did not want to make public commitments until they had conferred with officials back home. This group has pushed for the IMF to put in place a 2010 agreement giving fast-growing, emerging economies such as theirs more of a voice in the agency's decision-making.

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