World Economic OutlookOctober
1997
A Survey by the Staff of the International
Monetary Fund
Assumptions and Conventions
A number of assumptions have been adopted for the projections presented in the World
Economic Outlook. It has been assumed that real effective exchange rates will remain
constant at their average levels during July 18–August 14, 1997 except for the bilateral
rates among the European exchange rate mechanism (ERM) currencies, which are assumed to
remain constant in nominal terms; that established policies of national authorities will be
maintained (for specific assumptions about fiscal and monetary polices in industrial
countries, see Box 1); that the average price of oil will be $19.39 a barrel in 1997 and $19.03
a barrel in 1998, and remain unchanged in real terms over the medium term; and that the
sixmonth London interbank offered rate (LIBOR) on U.S. dollar deposits will average 5.9
percent in 1997 and 6.3 percent in 1998. These are, of course, working hypotheses rather than
forecasts, and the uncertainties surrounding them add to the margin of error that would in any
event be involved in the projections. The estimates and projections are generally based on
statistical information available at the end of August 1997.
The following conventions have been used throughout the
World Economic Outlook: 
...  to indicate that data are not available or not
applicable; 
—  to indicate that the figure is zero or
negligible; 
–  between years or months (for example,
1996–97 or
January–June) to indicate the years or months covered, including the beginning and
ending years or months; 
/  between years or months (for example, 1996/97) to indicate
a fiscal or
financial year. 
"Billion" means a thousand million;
"trillion"
means a thousand billion. 
"Basis points" refer to hundredths of 1
percentage point (for
example, 25 basis points are equivalent to ¼ of 1 percentage point). 
Minor discrepancies between sums of constituent figures
and totals
shown are due to rounding. 
* * *
As used in this report, the term "country" does not in all cases refer to a territorial
entity that is a state as understood by international law and practice. As used here, the term
also covers some territorial entities that are not states but for which statistical data are
maintained on a separate and independent basis.

©1997 International Monetary Fund
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