Western Hemisphere Region

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May 9, 2018

Regional Economic Outlook: Seizing the Momentum

Description: The broad-based acceleration of global growth in 2017 is reflected in the solid gains posted by the economies of the United States and Canada, both of which are expected to grow above potential in the near term. More broadly, growth in both advanced and emerging market and developing economies is expected to gain further momentum in 2018 and 2019, reflecting the effects of expansionary US fiscal policy, favorable global financial conditions, and improved prospects for external demand. Risks to the outlook are broadly balanced in the near term. Over the medium term, however, global growth is expected to soften, and risks are tilted to the downside, owing to the possibility of a sharp tightening of financial conditions, escalating trade tensions and risks of a further shift toward protectionist policies, and geopolitical strains.



October 7, 2016

Regional Economic Outlook (REO) Update: Western Hemisphere - Latin America and the Caribbean: Are Chills Here to Stay?, October 2016

Description: Economic activity in Latin America and the Caribbean is expected to bottom out in 2016, before making a modest recovery next year. While weak external demand and persistently low commodity prices continue to weigh on the regional outlook, domestic developments have been the key driver of growth outcomes in some stressed economies. GDP is expected to contract by 0.6 percent in 2016 before recovering to 1.6 percent growth in 2017. Recurrent growth disappointments point to lower potential growth, underscoring the need for structural reforms to boost productive capacity, but these will take time to bear fruit. Exchange rate flexibility has served the region well and, with shifting global trends, should continue to serve as the first line of defense against adverse shocks. In many cases, the need for a contractionary monetary policy stance is no longer evident, with inflation and inflation expectations returning to target levels. With risks still on the downside, countries should use the improved global financial environment to rebuild their fiscal buffers while preserving critical capital expenditures and social outlays. Uncertainty concerning the duration of easy global financial conditions poses risks for the region, while financial and corporate sector vulnerabilities bear closer monitoring.

April 27, 2016

Regional Economic Outlook (REO): Western Hemisphere - Managing Transitions and Risks, April 2016

Description: With the global economy still struggling, many countries in Latin America and the Caribbean are facing a harsher world than they did just a few years ago. The growth outlook is weaker in advanced and emerging economies alike, while the gradual slowdown and rebalancing of economic activity in China is likely to keep commodity prices lower for longer. Meanwhile, favorable external financial conditions over the past several years have become more volatile, and risks of a sudden tightening are on the rise. Against this backdrop, economic activity in Latin America and the Caribbean has been revised downward, compared with our January update and is likely to contract for a second consecutive year in 2016. But the growth outlook varies substantially within the region. While external conditions have placed a large drag on all commodity exporters, countries expected to post negative growth will do so mainly because of domestic imbalances and rigidities at home, and, in certain cases, temporary impact of policies designed to transition away from earlier distortions. But the news isn't all bad. In the rest of the region—and particularly where policy frameworks have been strengthened over the past two decades—a relatively smooth adjustment continues. Given these broad contours, growth stories vary between the south and north.


October 7, 2015

Regional Economic Outlook (REO): Western Hemisphere - Northern Spring, Southern Chills, April 2015

Description: Economies in the Western Hemisphere are generally seeing a slowdown in growth. The U.S. economy regained momentum after a slow start at the beginning of the year, while in Latin America and the Caribbean economic activity continues to decelerate at the regional level. Stronger U.S. growth should benefit countries in the region, especially those with tighter links through trade, remittances, and tourism (Mexico, Central America, and the Caribbean). Weaker commodity prices for the foreseeable future, however, will continue to hurt South America’s net commodity exporters—lowering national incomes, reducing investment, and worsening fiscal balances. These developments could, in turn, impede progress made in recent years in poverty reduction. Key risks, including an abrupt tightening of U.S. interest rates or a further slowdown in China, may disproportionately affect Latin America. Chapters in this report examine monetary policy in Latin America, including the region’s exposure to global financial shocks; the role of value chains and regional trade agreements in fostering trade integration; and the state of financial market development in the region.

April 29, 2015

Regional Economic Outlook (REO): Western Hemisphere - Northern Spring, Southern Chills, April 2015

Description: Global growth remained modest and uneven last year—amid further downgrades in medium-term growth forecasts and a sharp decline in the price of oil—and is projected to strengthen only gradually over the period ahead. Prospects for advanced economies have improved somewhat, as the U.S. economy is projected to maintain robust growth, while cheaper oil and weaker currencies should support recovery in the euro area and Japan. By contrast, growth is expected to ease in oil exporters and several major emerging market economies, including China. Risks around this global outlook have become more balanced, but key downside risks remain—including renewed geopolitical tensions, possible abrupt shifts in financial markets, and stagnation and low inflation risks in advanced economies.


October 10, 2014

Regional Economic Outlook: Western Hemisphere, October 2014 -- Table of Contents

Description: These reports discuss recent economic developments and prospects for countries in various regions. They also address economic policy developments that have affected economic performance in the regions, and discuss key challenges faced by policymakers. They address regional policy developments and challenges, and provide country-specific data and analysis, including through analytical pieces on issues of interest to a particular region.

April 24, 2014

Regional Economic Outlook: Western Hemisphere Hemisphere Department

Description: IMF Regional Economic Outlook: Western Hemisphere Department


October 11, 2013

Regional Economic Outlook Update: Western Hemisphere Hemisphere Department

Description: IMF Regional Economic Outlook Update: Western Hemisphere Department

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