IMF’s Christine Lagarde postpones trip to the Middle East

International Monetary Fund Managing Director Christine Lagarde has postponed her trip to the Middle East, according to an IMF statement on Wednesday. “The Managing Director’s previously scheduled trip to the Middle East region is being deferred,” an IMF spokesperson said. He was last seen on Oct. 2 when he entered the Saudi consulate in Istanbul. Turkish officials told media outlets that Khashoggi was killed and dismembered with a bone saw inside the consulate. He is due to fly to the Turkish c


International Monetary Fund Managing Director Christine Lagarde has postponed her trip to the Middle East, according to an IMF statement on Wednesday. “The Managing Director’s previously scheduled trip to the Middle East region is being deferred,” an IMF spokesperson said. He was last seen on Oct. 2 when he entered the Saudi consulate in Istanbul. Turkish officials told media outlets that Khashoggi was killed and dismembered with a bone saw inside the consulate. He is due to fly to the Turkish c
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Keywords: news, cnbc, companies, middle, riyadh, trip, lagarde, christine, imf, ceo, khashoggi, turkish, imfs, east, told, event, consulate, postpones, officials, saudi


IMF's Christine Lagarde postpones trip to the Middle East

International Monetary Fund Managing Director Christine Lagarde has postponed her trip to the Middle East, according to an IMF statement on Wednesday.

Lagarde’s visit to the region included attending the Future Investment Initiative, also known as “Davos in the Desert,” in Saudi Arabia. The conference is scheduled for Oct. 23 to 25.

“The Managing Director’s previously scheduled trip to the Middle East region is being deferred,” an IMF spokesperson said. The IMF did not give a reason for the postponement. CNBC has reached out to the IMF for clarification.

The investing event in Riyadh has seen mounting cancellations since the disappearance and suspected killing of Washington Post columnist Jamal Khashoggi. Turkish officials allege that he was murdered by a team of Saudi operatives, but Riyadh has fiercely denied the claim.

Media outlets including CNBC, Financial Times, CNN and The New York Times have also withdrawn from the event, citing concerns about Khashoggi’s disappearance.

Several prominent business leaders have also said they will not be attending the event, including J.P. Morgan Chase CEO Jamie Dimon, BlackRock CEO Larry Fink, Blackstone CEO Stephen Schwarzman and Mastercard CEO Ajay Banga.

Last week, Lagarde told reporters at the IMF and World Bank annual meetings in Bali, Indonesia, that while she was “horrified” at the disappearance and suspected killing of Khashoggi, she was still planning to attend the conference in Riyadh.

“I have to conduct the business of IMF in all corners of the world, and with many governments,” she said at that time. “When I visit a country, I always speak my mind. You know me, I do. At this point in time, my intention is to not change my plan and to be very attentive to the information that is coming out in the next few days, but I speak my mind.”

Khashoggi, who had been living in the United States as a voluntary exile from Saudi Arabia, was a prominent critic of Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman and the Saudi royal family. He was last seen on Oct. 2 when he entered the Saudi consulate in Istanbul.

Turkish officials told media outlets that Khashoggi was killed and dismembered with a bone saw inside the consulate. The Saudi government has denied those allegations.

An official told the Associated Press on Tuesday that a police search of the consulate found evidence that Khashoggi was slain there.

U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo met Saudi Arabia’s King Salman, Crown Prince Mohammed and Foreign Minister Adel al-Jubeir in Riyadh on Tuesday to discuss the matter. He is due to fly to the Turkish capital of Ankara on Wednesday to meet Turkish officials.


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There’s ‘no winner’ in a trade war, warns IMF deputy managing director

If global supply chains are forced to adjust to the ongoing trade tensions between the U.S. and China, it could cost the world economy about 1 percent of its GDP by next year, a senior IMF official warned. When resources are reallocated due to market forces, that is considered to be an improvement in efficiency, said Tao Zhang, deputy managing director at the International Monetary Fund. It would cost the entire world “close to 1 percent of GDP by 2019,” Zhang added. The IMF recently cut global


If global supply chains are forced to adjust to the ongoing trade tensions between the U.S. and China, it could cost the world economy about 1 percent of its GDP by next year, a senior IMF official warned. When resources are reallocated due to market forces, that is considered to be an improvement in efficiency, said Tao Zhang, deputy managing director at the International Monetary Fund. It would cost the entire world “close to 1 percent of GDP by 2019,” Zhang added. The IMF recently cut global
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There's 'no winner' in a trade war, warns IMF deputy managing director

If global supply chains are forced to adjust to the ongoing trade tensions between the U.S. and China, it could cost the world economy about 1 percent of its GDP by next year, a senior IMF official warned.

When resources are reallocated due to market forces, that is considered to be an improvement in efficiency, said Tao Zhang, deputy managing director at the International Monetary Fund. But when those changes happen due to unnatural distortions in the global environment, the cost of adjustment is high, he told CNBC’s Nancy Hungerford on Saturday, during the IMF and World Bank annual meetings in Bali, Indonesia.

It would cost the entire world “close to 1 percent of GDP by 2019,” Zhang added. “This gives you (an) illustration of how serious the result will be, but, in reality, we will see probably even more complicated implications, not only on trade, investment, but also on confidence and people’s psychological reactions.”

The IMF recently cut global growth forecasts: It predicted that the world economy would grow at 3.7 percent this year and next year — down 0.2 percentage points from an earlier forecast. The fund also cut its predictions for global trade volumes: The total goods and services flow is expected to grow by 4.2 percent this year and 4 percent next year — down 0.6 and 0.5 percentage points, respectively, from earlier estimates.

According to Zhang, there are no beneficiaries in a trade war. Even if a country appears to have come out on top, it would potentially do so at the expense of production capacities and a reduction in final demand.


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There is ‘no winner’ in the tariff ‘game’: IMF

There is ‘no winner’ in the tariff ‘game’: IMF21 Hours AgoTao Zhang of the International Monetary Fund says it is “in nobody’s interest” for countries to escalate trade tensions instead of engaging in dialogue to resolve the dispute.


There is ‘no winner’ in the tariff ‘game’: IMF21 Hours AgoTao Zhang of the International Monetary Fund says it is “in nobody’s interest” for countries to escalate trade tensions instead of engaging in dialogue to resolve the dispute.
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There is 'no winner' in the tariff 'game': IMF

There is ‘no winner’ in the tariff ‘game’: IMF

21 Hours Ago

Tao Zhang of the International Monetary Fund says it is “in nobody’s interest” for countries to escalate trade tensions instead of engaging in dialogue to resolve the dispute.


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IMF Christine Lagarde on Jamal Khashoggi’s disappearance, Saudi Arabia

BALI, Indonesia — Christine Lagarde, managing director of the International Monetary Fund, said she is “horrified” at the disappearance and suspected killing of journalist Jamal Khashoggi but still plans to attend a conference in Saudi Arabia later this month. U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin told CNBC on Friday that he, too, still plans to attend FII. “We are concerned about what is the status of Mr. Khashoggi,” Mnuchin told CNBC. Saudi Arabia has denied wrongdoing. Khashoggi had been liv


BALI, Indonesia — Christine Lagarde, managing director of the International Monetary Fund, said she is “horrified” at the disappearance and suspected killing of journalist Jamal Khashoggi but still plans to attend a conference in Saudi Arabia later this month. U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin told CNBC on Friday that he, too, still plans to attend FII. “We are concerned about what is the status of Mr. Khashoggi,” Mnuchin told CNBC. Saudi Arabia has denied wrongdoing. Khashoggi had been liv
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IMF Christine Lagarde on Jamal Khashoggi's disappearance, Saudi Arabia

BALI, Indonesia — Christine Lagarde, managing director of the International Monetary Fund, said she is “horrified” at the disappearance and suspected killing of journalist Jamal Khashoggi but still plans to attend a conference in Saudi Arabia later this month.

“Human rights, freedom of information are essential rights. And horrifying things have been reported and I am horrified,” she told reporters on Saturday in Bali, Indonesia, where the IMF and World Bank are conducting their annual meetings.

“But I have to conduct the business of IMF in all corners of the world, and with many governments,” she added. “When I visit a country, I always speak my mind. You know me, I do. At this point in time, my intention is to not change my plan and to be very attentive to the information that is coming out in the next few days, but I speak my mind.”

Lagarde was responding to a question on whether she will proceed with her planned visit to Riyadh, Saudi Arabia to attend the Future Investment Initiative, also known as “Davos in the Desert,” which is scheduled for Oct. 23 to 25.

Several luminaries and media outlets — including CNBC, Financial Times, CNN and The New York Times — have withdrawn from the event, citing concerns about the disappearance of Khashoggi and his alleged murder.

Lagarde is not the only one who is going ahead with attending the conference. U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin told CNBC on Friday that he, too, still plans to attend FII.

“We are concerned about what is the status of Mr. Khashoggi,” Mnuchin told CNBC. “If more information comes out and changes, we could look at that, but I am planning on going.”

Khashoggi, a critic of Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman and the Saudi royal family, was last seen Oct. 2 when he entered the Saudi consulate in Istanbul. Saudi Arabia has denied wrongdoing. Turkey has reportedly informed the U.S. that it has video and audio evidence showing Khashoggi, who wrote for The Washington Post, was killed inside the consulate.

Khashoggi had been living in the United States as a voluntary exile from Saudi Arabia.

Several senators, led by Republicans Bob Corker and Lindsey Graham, have triggered a U.S. investigation into Khashoggi’s whereabouts. The White House has said senior administration officials, including President Donald Trump’s son-in-law and top advisor Jared Kushner and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, have been in contact with the crown prince regarding the journalist’s disappearance.

— CNBC’s Mike Calia contributed reporting.


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China echoes IMF pledge to avoid using currency as a trade tool

“China will continue to let the market play a decisive role in the formation of the RMB exchange rate,” Yi said in an International Monetary and Financial Committee (IMFC) statement posted on Saturday. “We will not engage in competitive devaluation, and will not use the exchange rate as a tool to deal with trade frictions.” His statement echoes currency pledges made in a communique issued by the IMF’s member countries on Saturday to step up their trade dialogue as rising tariff frictions, and hi


“China will continue to let the market play a decisive role in the formation of the RMB exchange rate,” Yi said in an International Monetary and Financial Committee (IMFC) statement posted on Saturday. “We will not engage in competitive devaluation, and will not use the exchange rate as a tool to deal with trade frictions.” His statement echoes currency pledges made in a communique issued by the IMF’s member countries on Saturday to step up their trade dialogue as rising tariff frictions, and hi
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China echoes IMF pledge to avoid using currency as a trade tool

Sec. Mnuchin: China selling US Treasurys would be costly for them 7:41 AM ET Fri, 12 Oct 2018 | 03:47

The yuan has fallen more than 8 percent against the dollar since the end of April to about 6.91 on Friday, close to the psychologically important 7.0 level not seen in a decade.

“China will continue to let the market play a decisive role in the formation of the RMB exchange rate,” Yi said in an International Monetary and Financial Committee (IMFC) statement posted on Saturday. “We will not engage in competitive devaluation, and will not use the exchange rate as a tool to deal with trade frictions.”

His statement echoes currency pledges made in a communique issued by the IMF’s member countries on Saturday to step up their trade dialogue as rising tariff frictions, and higher borrowing costs threaten to knock global growth.

In the statement from the IMF’s steering committee, the member countries also agreed to debate ways to improve the World Trade Organization so it can better address trade disputes.

“We acknowledge that free, fair, and mutually beneficial goods and services trade and investment are key engines for growth and job creation,” the IMFC said in the statement.

“We will refrain from competitive devaluations and will not target our exchange rates for competitive purposes,” it added.


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Trade war could cut China’s growth by nearly 2 percentage points over two years: IMF

At its worst, the ongoing trade tensions could knock 1.6 percentage points off China’s economic growth over the first two years, according to an analysis by the International Monetary Fund. The assessment took into account all current and proposed tariffs on Chinese goods that enter the U.S., as well as knock-on effects the trade tensions have on investor confidence and financial markets. Rhee told reporters that direct economic impact from the tariff fight between the U.S. and China is actually


At its worst, the ongoing trade tensions could knock 1.6 percentage points off China’s economic growth over the first two years, according to an analysis by the International Monetary Fund. The assessment took into account all current and proposed tariffs on Chinese goods that enter the U.S., as well as knock-on effects the trade tensions have on investor confidence and financial markets. Rhee told reporters that direct economic impact from the tariff fight between the U.S. and China is actually
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Trade war could cut China's growth by nearly 2 percentage points over two years: IMF

At its worst, the ongoing trade tensions could knock 1.6 percentage points off China’s economic growth over the first two years, according to an analysis by the International Monetary Fund.

The assessment took into account all current and proposed tariffs on Chinese goods that enter the U.S., as well as knock-on effects the trade tensions have on investor confidence and financial markets. But much of that impact is expected to be offset by the Chinese government’s policies to stimulate the economy, noted Changyong Rhee, director of the IMF’s Asia and Pacific Department.

The analysis was published on Friday in the IMF’s Regional Economic Outlook report focusing on the Asia Pacific region.

Rhee told reporters that direct economic impact from the tariff fight between the U.S. and China is actually “quite small.” What’s more detrimental is the hit to investor confidence, which has rattled financial markets and is likely to last for a while, he said.

“This is one of the reasons why we feel that headwinds may last longer,” Rhee said. “I don’t know what will be the end … I think the lessons we have taken is how much the global financial markets and real economy are well integrated, no one can be free from such shocks.”

“In the end, there will be no winner from the global trade war,” he said in Bali, Indonesia where the IMF and the World Bank are holding their annual meetings.


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This is not the time to hike spending, the IMF tells Italy

The International Monetary Fund (IMF) has one clear message for the Italian government: this is not the time to increase your spending bill. In an interview with CNBC Friday, Poul Thomsen, the IMF’s Europe Department chief, said at this stage of the economic cycle, Italy “should take more advantage of the situation to bring down debt.” The Italian government’s decision to increase public spending in 2019 has raised concerns in Brussels and in financial markets. Italian stocks and government debt


The International Monetary Fund (IMF) has one clear message for the Italian government: this is not the time to increase your spending bill. In an interview with CNBC Friday, Poul Thomsen, the IMF’s Europe Department chief, said at this stage of the economic cycle, Italy “should take more advantage of the situation to bring down debt.” The Italian government’s decision to increase public spending in 2019 has raised concerns in Brussels and in financial markets. Italian stocks and government debt
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This is not the time to hike spending, the IMF tells Italy

The International Monetary Fund (IMF) has one clear message for the Italian government: this is not the time to increase your spending bill.

In an interview with CNBC Friday, Poul Thomsen, the IMF’s Europe Department chief, said at this stage of the economic cycle, Italy “should take more advantage of the situation to bring down debt.”

The Italian government’s decision to increase public spending in 2019 has raised concerns in Brussels and in financial markets. Italian stocks and government debt have been hit by these concerns, with investors worried that the extra spending will become a problem in the future due to Rome’s massive debt pile.

“Italy needs to consolidate at this point of the cycle and not to relax, as the (budget) plans would entail,” Thomsen told CNBC’s Geoff Cutmore.


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Navigating fintech’s rise: IMF, World Bank launch guide for policymakers

The International Monetary Fund and the World Bank jointly released a paper that will guide policymakers around the world in their handling of the rise of financial technology — commonly known as fintech. The paper, called the Bali Fintech Agenda, was launched on Thursday on the Indonesian island where the IMF and the World Bank are holding their annual meetings. Fintech has the potential to reach the 1.7 billion adults in the world that don’t have access to financial services, IMF Managing Dire


The International Monetary Fund and the World Bank jointly released a paper that will guide policymakers around the world in their handling of the rise of financial technology — commonly known as fintech. The paper, called the Bali Fintech Agenda, was launched on Thursday on the Indonesian island where the IMF and the World Bank are holding their annual meetings. Fintech has the potential to reach the 1.7 billion adults in the world that don’t have access to financial services, IMF Managing Dire
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Navigating fintech's rise: IMF, World Bank launch guide for policymakers

The International Monetary Fund and the World Bank jointly released a paper that will guide policymakers around the world in their handling of the rise of financial technology — commonly known as fintech.

The paper, called the Bali Fintech Agenda, was launched on Thursday on the Indonesian island where the IMF and the World Bank are holding their annual meetings.

The paper outlines 12 “elements” or considerations that the IMF, the World Bank and governments can keep in mind when designing policies and regulations that can maximize the benefits of fintech while keeping financial systems sound.

Those “elements” include using fintech to promote financial inclusion, allowing new technology players to have level playing fields with existing companies and having countries work together to protect the global financial system.

Fintech has the potential to reach the 1.7 billion adults in the world that don’t have access to financial services, IMF Managing Director Christine Lagarde said in a statement.

But, new technology could threaten existing financial systems. For example, volatility in the price of cryptocurrencies has raised concerns about investor protection, according to the paper.

“Fintech can have a major social and economic impact for them and across the membership in general. All countries are trying to reap these benefits, while also mitigating the risks,” Lagarde said.

“We need greater international cooperation to achieve that, and to make sure the fintech revolution benefits the many and not just the few,” she added.

World Bank Group President Jim Yong Kim said fintech would be particularly helpful to low-income countries, where access to financial services is low.

Both organizations said the paper doesn’t represent current work, nor does it aim to provide specific guidance or policy advice. They will, however, start to develop specific programs on fintech.

The IMF will focus initially on the implications on monetary and financial stability and how international monetary systems and global financial safety nets evolve. The World Bank will work on using fintech to deepen financial markets, enhance responsible access to financial services, and improve cross-border payments and remittance transfer systems.


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Global growth is ‘probably not enough’ to withstand a trade war, IMF’s Christine Lagarde warns

The global economy, while still growing, has hit a plateau and may not be strong enough to withstand rising trade tensions, International Monetary Fund (IMF) Managing Director Christine Lagarde said Thursday. The IMF earlier this week cut its forecast for global growth to 3.7 percent this year and next year — down 0.2 percentage points from an earlier estimate. The downward revisions mean that the global economy would grow by the same rate for three consecutive years starting 2017. “Moreover, so


The global economy, while still growing, has hit a plateau and may not be strong enough to withstand rising trade tensions, International Monetary Fund (IMF) Managing Director Christine Lagarde said Thursday. The IMF earlier this week cut its forecast for global growth to 3.7 percent this year and next year — down 0.2 percentage points from an earlier estimate. The downward revisions mean that the global economy would grow by the same rate for three consecutive years starting 2017. “Moreover, so
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Global growth is 'probably not enough' to withstand a trade war, IMF's Christine Lagarde warns

The global economy, while still growing, has hit a plateau and may not be strong enough to withstand rising trade tensions, International Monetary Fund (IMF) Managing Director Christine Lagarde said Thursday.

The IMF earlier this week cut its forecast for global growth to 3.7 percent this year and next year — down 0.2 percentage points from an earlier estimate. The downward revisions mean that the global economy would grow by the same rate for three consecutive years starting 2017.

“The real question is: Is the economy strong enough? To that, my answer is ‘probably not enough’ because we clearly see growth has plateaued three years in a row — it is at 3.7 percent — and we also see that growth is unevenly allocated around the world,” Lagarde told reporters at the IMF and World Bank annual meetings in Bali, Indonesia.

“Moreover, some of the risks that we have highlighted at our spring meetings in April have now begun to materialize, especially from the rising trade barriers,” she added. “If these tensions were to escalate, the global economy would take a significant hit.”

In addition to the hit to economic growth prospects, worsening trade tensions could also trigger another global financial crisis, the IMF said earlier this week.

Lagarde said the best response to the ongoing tensions is to “de-escalate, fix the system, don’t break it.” She added that the casualties won’t just be the U.S. and China — the two largest economies in the world in the center of the current tariff fight – but also countries that are part of the global supply chain and suppliers of raw materials to manufacturers involved in the dispute.


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Trade tensions could trigger another global financial crisis: IMF

Risks are building up in the global financial system, and a further escalation in trade tensions could push the situation over the edge, the International Monetary Fund warned. Investors have appeared complacent, however, according to the IMF’s latest Global Financial Stability Report, which was released on Wednesday. The report, published twice a year, contains the fund’s assessment of global financial conditions and highlights risks in the system. But the uncertainties surrounding trade could


Risks are building up in the global financial system, and a further escalation in trade tensions could push the situation over the edge, the International Monetary Fund warned. Investors have appeared complacent, however, according to the IMF’s latest Global Financial Stability Report, which was released on Wednesday. The report, published twice a year, contains the fund’s assessment of global financial conditions and highlights risks in the system. But the uncertainties surrounding trade could
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Trade tensions could trigger another global financial crisis: IMF

Risks are building up in the global financial system, and a further escalation in trade tensions could push the situation over the edge, the International Monetary Fund warned.

Investors have appeared complacent, however, according to the IMF’s latest Global Financial Stability Report, which was released on Wednesday. The report, published twice a year, contains the fund’s assessment of global financial conditions and highlights risks in the system.

Stock prices — particularly those in the U.S. — have hit record-high levels multiple times over the past year, which is an indication that investors have continued to take on risks. But the uncertainties surrounding trade could cause such sentiment to turn quickly and trigger a sudden sell-off in financial markets, the report said.

“A further escalation of trade tensions, as well as rising geopolitical risks and policy uncertainty in major economies, could lead to a sudden deterioration in risk sentiment, triggering a broad-based correction in global capital markets and a sharp tightening of global financial conditions,” the fund said in the report.

The IMF said on Tuesday that disruptions to global trade is threatening growth. It cut its global growth forecasts for 2018 and 2019 by 0.2 percentage points to 3.7 percent, and lowered projections for the increase in goods and services trade worldwide.


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