The World Economic Outlook, published twice a year in English, French, Spanish, and Arabic, presents IMF staff economists' analyses of global economic developments during the near and medium term. Chapters give an overview of the world economy; consider issues affecting industrial countries, and economics in transition to market; and address topics of pressing current interest. Annexes, boxes, charts, and an extensive statistical appendix augment the text.
Following a series of adverse shocks in the first half of 2003, there are now increasing signs of a renewed recovery, and the balance of risks—in April, tilted well to the downside—has improved significantly. But with the pace and robustness of the recovery still unclear, and inflationary pressures low, monetary policies should remain accommodative for the time being; fiscal policies increasingly need to focus on medium-term consolidation, especially given coming demographic pressures. The widening global imbalances, and continuing dependence of global growth on the United States, underscore the need for an acceleration of structural reforms in many countries, along with measures to rein in the U.S. budget deficit over the medium term and, in some cases, a gradual move to greater exchange rate flexibility.
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