Lagarde Wants Faster French Structural Reforms

The head of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) is urging France to speed up structural reforms to bolster economic growth and warning against using weak inflation as an excuse to relax public deficit reduction efforts.

In an interview with French daily Les Echos to be published on Monday, IMF Managing Director Christine Lagarde said the French government must implement “truly, rapidly and fully structural reforms likely to generate growth”.

“Even if inflation is weaker than expected, it cannot be used as a screen to postpone the necessary efforts on (public) spending”, she added.

Socialist President Francois Hollande’s government was forced to abandon growth and fiscal targets for 2014 and 2015 last month after data showed the economy delivered no growth for the second straight quarter.

Lagarde, who was France’s minister of finance from 2007 to 2011, also said she did not believe the euro zone’s austerity policy had been excessive and found the pace of deficit reduction “appropriate in each country” of the bloc.

via Reuters

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Alfonso Esparza

Alfonso Esparza

Senior Currency Analyst at Market Pulse
Alfonso Esparza specializes in macro forex strategies for North American and major currency pairs. Upon joining OANDA in 2007, Alfonso Esparza established the MarketPulseFX blog and he has since written extensively about central banks and global economic and political trends. Alfonso has also worked as a professional currency trader focused on North America and emerging markets. He has been published by The MarketWatch, Reuters, the Wall Street Journal and The Globe and Mail, and he also appears regularly as a guest commentator on networks including Bloomberg and BNN. He holds a finance degree from the Monterrey Institute of Technology and Higher Education (ITESM) and an MBA with a specialization on financial engineering and marketing from the University of Toronto.
Alfonso Esparza