Public Information Notice: IMF Executive Board Discusses Lessons from the Crisis in Argentina, March 24, 2004

Argentina and the IMF

Lessons from the Crisis in Argentina

Prepared by the Policy Development and Review Department

(In consultation with other Departments)

Approved by Timothy Geithner

October 8, 2003

Use the free Adobe Acrobat Reader to view the PDF file (565 kB)


  1. Introduction

  2. Boom Years and Buildup of Vulnerabilities—1992-98
      A. Public Finances
      B. The Structural Setting
        External Sector
        Financial System
        Labor Market
        Currency Board
      C. Summary

  3. Downturn and Deepening Depression—1998-2000
      A. Initial Downturn—1998
      B. Deepening Depression and Policy Dilemma—1999-2000
      C. Summary

  4. The Crisis—2001

  5. The Aftermath—2002

  6. The Role of the IMF

  7. Conclusions
      A. Argentina's Crisis
      B. Lessons for Crisis Prevention and Management
      C. Lessons for the Fund
      D. Issues for Discussion

Appendix I: Estimates of Argentina's Potential Output Growth
Appendix II: Chronology of Main Developments in 2001-2002


Text Tables
1. Argentina: Fiscal Indicators, 1992-2001
2. Argentina: Public Sector Debt Dynamics, 1992-2001
3. Argentina: Ratings of Institutional Strength and Corruption
4. Argentina: Programmed and Actual Fiscal Balances and Impulses, 1999-2001

1. The Argentine Crisis—A Brief Review of the Academic Literature
2. Argentina's Intergovernmental Relations
3. Trade Liberalization and Real Exchange Rate Dynamics: Evidence
from Other Countries
4. Labor Market Reforms—How Much was Done?
5. Fiscal Discipline and the Viability of the Exchange Rate Regime
6. Did the Currency Board Contribute to Dollarization?
7. Factors Contributing to the 1998 Downturn
8. Deflation and Depression
9. Could Expansionary Fiscal Policy Have Stabilized the Debt Dynamics?
10. Monetary Conditions Indices for Argentina, Chile, and Mexico
11. Was There a Credit Crunch?
12. Empirical Estimates of the Effects of a Depreciation

1. Argentina: Key Macroeconomic Indicators, 1992-98
2. Revenue Performance in Selected Emerging Market Countries, Averages 1996-2000
3. External Debt Ratios in Selected Countries, 1998
4. Argentina: Exports, Imports, Terms of Trade, and Real Exchange Rate, 1993-2001
5. Argentina: Export Performance, 1993-2001
6. Indicators of Financial Market Development in Selected Countries, Averages 1997-99
7. Argentina: Productivity and Wages, 1995-2001
8. Argentina: Labor Market Characteristics, 1994-2001
9. Argentina: Contributions to Output Growth, 1998-2001
10. Argentina: Capital Market Indicators, 1994-2001
11. Evolution of Forecasts for Real GDP Growth and Consumer Price Inflation: Program Projections and Consensus Forecasts, 1998-2001
12. Argentina: Monetary Aggregates, 1997-2001
13. Argentina: Fiscal Performance Under IMF-Supported Programs, 1994-2001