News from Around the World

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IMF readies for further danger signals in emerging markets

With Asian equity markets tumbling on Thursday morning, Christine Lagarde, the head of the IMF, used her pulpit at a Balinese beachside conference centre to deliver some marching orders to economic policymakers in emerging markets. 

They should, she said, “use all the tools” at their disposal to stem the capital outflows that would inevitably be triggered by tightening monetary policy in the US, and the escalating trade war between the US and China.


A new US development finance agency takes flight

WASHINGTON — The United States will have a new development finance institution.

On Wednesday, the U.S. Senate passed the Better Utilization of Investment Leading to Development, or BUILD Act, which will create a new U.S. government agency — the U.S. International Development Finance Corporation. Development experts called it the biggest change in U.S. development policy in 15 years.


World economy at risk of another financial crash, says IMF

The world economy is at risk of another financial meltdown, following the failure of governments and regulators to push through all the reforms needed to protect the system from reckless behaviour, the International Monetary Fund has warned.

With global debt levels well above those at the time of the last crash in 2008, the risk remains that unregulated parts of the financial system could trigger a global panic, the Washington-based lender of last resort said

UK prime minister Theresa May hopes the EU27 leaders will give a political push to the EU’s chief negotiator to close a deal.

Brexit timeline: key dates in UK’s divorce with EU

Britain is nearing the final straight of Brexit. At 11pm local time on March 29 2019, the UK is scheduled to leave the bloc. But still to be decided is what precisely will happen on Brexit day, what kind of deal, if any, Britain will leave with, and the final destination of the negotiations.

With less than six months to go, the Financial Times sets out the chief way stations on the road to Brexit and beyond.

Gita Gopinath during a debate at the IMF and World Bank Group annual meetings a year ago. PHOTO: ANDREW HARRER/BLOOMBERG NEWS

IMF Appoints Harvard’s Gita Gopinath as Chief Economist

The International Monetary Fund appointed Harvard University’s Gita Gopinath as its new chief economist.

Ms. Gopinath, one of the leading scholars in exchange rates, sovereign debt and capital flows, will be the first woman to lead the IMF’s economic research department. She will take over from Maurice Obstfeld, who had previously announced his retirement.

Trudeau and Nieto

Mexico Pushes to Keep Canada in Nafta

Mexico’s president-elect said he will push to keep Canada in the North American Free Trade Agreement, as Mexican officials scrambled to try to broker a last-minute deal between Washington and Ottawa.

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto chatting on the sidelines of the U.N. General Assembly this week. No meeting occurred between Mr. Trudeau and President Trump amid stark trade differences. PHOTO: HANDOUT/REUTERS

Nafta Isn’t Dead Yet, Despite Missed Deadline

WASHINGTON—President Trump has concluded that trade talks with Canada have reached an impasse, giving up on the self-imposed Sept. 30 deadline for completing a full rewrite of the North American Free Trade Agreement.

Chinese household debt hits record high, study shows

Chinese household debt hits record high, study shows

China’s household debt reached a record high last year, adding to worries the burden of debt services could weigh on long-term consumer spending and drag on growth in the world’s second-largest economy.

The country’s ratio of household debt to gross domestic product hit an all-time high of 49.1 per cent in 2017, marking an increase of nearly 20 per percentage points over the past five years, German insurer Allianz said in its latest global wealth report.

Michael Pence, vice president of the United States, addresses a meeting on regional migration organized by the Permanent Mission of Colombia to the United Nations

US pledges additional $48M for Venezuela crisis

WASHINGTON — United States Vice President Mike Pence announced an additional $48 million in U.S. funding for the regional response to Venezuelan refugees and migrants on Tuesday at the United Nations General Assembly in New York.

U.S. Capitol dome. Photo: J. Scott Applewhite/Associated Press

House Sets Vote on Plan to Double Funding for Global Infrastructure Projects

Must-pass FAA bill includes ‘Build Act,’ a bid to counter China’s influence by bolstering development financing