With food inflation for a median country in Latin America and the Caribbean running at 14% in 2022, its highest level in 20 years and even core inflation -- excluding energy and food -- running at 7%, central banks in the region have been compelled to keep interest rates aloft. This has contributed to an important social goal because the poor spend the largest share of their … [Read more...] about The Delicate Balance of Protecting Income While Fighting Inflation
Since 2020, the economies of the world have been hit by a series of severe shocks, most dramatically the COVID-19 pandemic and the Russian invasion of Ukraine. As a result, after growing around 3.9% last year, Latin America and the Caribbean region now faces considerably lower growth projections for 2023, with private forecasters predicting growth at around 1%. It also … [Read more...] about Preparing the Macroeconomic Terrain for Renewed Growth
With inflation in Latin America and the Caribbean running at its hottest in two decades, the issue of where that inflation comes from and what the region's central banks might do differently has taken on great urgency. Our newly released study arrives at a hugely important conclusion: the overwhelming bulk of inflation in the region today comes not from factors that are … [Read more...] about The Universal Factors Behind Inflation in Latin America and the Caribbean
Inflation in Latin America is currently running at its highest level in 15 years. With uncertainty about how it will unfold, the expectations of people and firms are largely de-anchored, meaning distinct from the central banks’ target levels, and thus a potential source of even greater inflation. Meanwhile, as world interest rates rise, countries in the region are finding it … [Read more...] about Lessons from the Lost Decade for Confronting Inflation Today
Boosting financial inclusion has long been essential in Latin America and the Caribbean, where more than 200 million people lack access to financial services and large numbers of citizens are unable to open a bank account because of poverty, geography, discrimination, and lack of proper identification. Alternative systems, however, could be transformative. They could be … [Read more...] about Is There a Future for Digital Currencies Issued by Central Banks in Latin America and the Caribbean?