Policymakers in Latin America and the Caribbean may be keenly aware that the region's crumbling roads, inefficient energy systems, and inadequate water and sanitation hold their countries back. But efforts to improve these and other infrastructure services get the short end of the stick. When governments reduce fiscal deficits, they consistently shortchange capital spending on … [Read more...] about When Improving Infrastructure Can’t Wait
Macroeconomics and Finance
For a long time, economists believed that inequality in the labor market could be explained fundamentally by differences in skills. Workers who were highly educated, experienced and skilled tended to be rewarded better by the labor market than workers who weren't. Firms were essentially irrelevant in this paradigm. Workers were rewarded for their productivity: It didn't matter … [Read more...] about Did Changes Among Firms Reduce Wage Inequality in Latin America?
For much of the 1980s and early 1990s, Latin America and the Caribbean was in the throes of hyperinflation. In 1990, for example, 16 of 20 countries in the region had inflation rates above 20%, while in 2018 only three of those countries had inflation above 8%, according to IMF figures. The main ingredients to that success were fiscal reforms, debt negotiations that allowed … [Read more...] about What Brazil Can Teach About Fighting Inflation
Latin America and the Caribbean faces uncertain times. Weaker than expected growth in the United States, together with lower corporate earnings and higher interest rates, could lead to a 2.4% accumulated loss in GDP in our region from 2019-2021. Less demand from China might trigger a drop in GDP over the same period, and Brexit potentially threatens to dampen performance in … [Read more...] about As External Challenges Loom, Boosting Growth from Within
When Brazil's government decided in 1967 to create a free trade zone in Manaus, it had glittering visions of Amazonian development. Located at the meeting point of two tributaries of the Amazon river, the so-called "City of the Forest" had fallen on hard times since the end of the rubber boom nearly a century before. Generous reductions in import tariffs and other tax breaks, … [Read more...] about Migration Can Shape Local Development Policies in Unexpected Ways