Statement by IMF First Deputy Managing Director David Lipton on the IMF’s Financial Surveillance Strategy

Press Release No. 12/356
September 21, 2012

Mr. David Lipton, First Deputy Managing Director of the International Monetary Fund (IMF), issued the following statement today in Washington, DC:

The IMF Executive Board’s adoption on September 19 of a strategy for financial surveillance affirms the IMF’s efforts to strengthen the surveillance of its member countries' financial sectors and global financial developments. Given the critical importance of financial systems for economic growth and stability, it is essential to have effective financial surveillance to enable the early detection of systemic risks and provide timely macrofinancial policy advice.

Financial systems have expanded rapidly over the past two decades in terms of their size, complexity, and inter-connectedness. These developments not only create new opportunities for growth, but also mean that systemic risks can build and transmit across borders in ways that undermine financial stability, as illustrated by the recent global financial crisis. The IMF has made significant strides in integrating financial sector analysis in its surveillance, but the need to adapt its analyses and policy advice to a rapidly changing and increasingly complex terrain remains.

The strategy has three pillars:

  • Innovate further to improve analysis and sharpen policy advice on vulnerabilities, real-financial linkages, and cross-border spillovers. For example, developing policies to contain the sovereign-bank feedback loop, prevent excessive global deleveraging, and enhance the complementarity of monetary, macroprudential, and microprudential tools.
  • Upgrade the instruments of financial surveillance, including by further integrating cross-border spillovers in the Fund’s annual Article IV policy consultations with member countries, and, in addition, conducting surveillance on clusters of countries that are financially interconnected.
  • Increase the traction of policy advice by engaging more actively and candidly with national authorities and by deepening collaboration with other stakeholders, such as by serving as a global macroprudential facilitator and a systemic risk advisor.

Implementation of the strategy will draw on what makes the Fund uniquely placed to address the concerns of its member countries in the areas of macroeconomic and financial policies, namely, its vast cross country experience in dealing with crises, the independence that derives from its mandate, its near-universal membership, and the versatility and expertise of its staff.



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