The International Monetary Fund has just completed its tenth review of Jamaica’s performance on its programme and has agreed to loosen the country’s primary surplus target.
The primary surplus can be defined as what is left to service debt after the government considers its revenues and expenditure on running the country. So wages, social programmes spending, and general spending on maintaining the country is taken out of revenues, and what is left is called the primary surplus.
Jamaica’s current primary surplus target is 7.5%.
The reduced target will give the government more space to increase public spending on capital outlays that boost growth and job creation as well as to continue to protect social spending. Continue Reading
The IMF today announced that it completed Jamaica’s third review under the Extended Fund Facility Arrangement and Approves a US$71.4 Million Disbursement.
The full release reads:
The Executive Board of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) today (March 19, 2014) completed the third review of Jamaica’s economic performance under a program supported by an Extended Fund Facility (EFF) arrangement. The completion of this review enables the disbursement of an amount equivalent to SDR 45.9 million (about US$71.4 million), which would bring total disbursements under the arrangement to the equivalent of SDR 222.6 million (about US$345.8 million). Continue Reading
The International Monetary Fund today confirmed that Jamaica has passed its first quarterly test and qualifies for an additional disbursement.
The Executive Board of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) today completed the first review of Jamaica’s performance under an economic program supported by a four-year, SDR 615.38 million (about US$944 million, the equivalent of 225 percent of Jamaica’s quota in the IMF) Extended Fund Facility (EFF) arrangement. The completion of this review enables the disbursement of SDR 19.97 million (about US$30.6 million), which would bring total disbursements under the arrangement to SDR 156.72 million (about US$240.4 million). Continue Reading
After the Trinidadian government imposed a 15 percent Common External Tariff (CET) on chicken imports four months ago, poultry dealers have begun to complain about shortages in the local market. This has particularly affected southern and central Trinidad. Continue Reading
Investors, householders, businesses, consumers and everybody else will be waiting with bated breath to finally hear the details of the 2013-2014 budget as Minister of Finance Dr. Peter Phillips, releases it today April 18, 2013 in parliament. Continue Reading
Please see just issued release from the International Monetary Fund
“Since the conclusion of a staff-level agreement with the Jamaican authorities in February on an economic program that can be supported by the Fund, the authorities have submitted documentation to the IMF to confirm that all prior actions have been met. In addition, the Fund has engaged with the authorities and its development partners on the financing for the program, including through important contributions from the Inter-American Development Bank and the World Bank. Continue Reading
Three of a reported eight financial companies have said they will participate in a second round of the National Debt Exchange to help the Government plug a shortfall in the funds needed to drive down its debt-servicing costs.
The three institutions which have already indicated their willingness in participating are Scotia Group Jamaica, National Commercial Bank Jamaica and GraceKennedy Ltd (parent of First Global Financial Services), while the other five institutions are Sagicor, JMMB Group, Jamaica National Building Society, First Global Financial Services (subsidiary of GraceKennedy), Victoria Mutual Building Society and Guardian Life Limited.
On Mar 28, 2013 the National Commercial Bank reported its participation in a private debt exchange, organized subsequent to the publicly announced National Debt Exchange to plug an additional estimated J$25 billion shortfall in funds needed to reduce the government’s debt bill. This Private Debt Exchange (called in some circles as NDX2) was done with some of the major holders of government securities.
NCB reported that;
National Commercial Bank Jamaica Limited and its subsidiaries exchanged in aggregate approximately J$7 billion of Government of Jamaica securities in the private debt exchange. The securities were exchanged for other securities with lower coupons and different maturity dates.
The company expects an adverse impact during the current financial year (ending September 30, 2013) on the company gains on foreign currency and investment activities, and interest income from securities held. Given that the coupons on the securities offered were higher than those on the securities received after the exchange, if the company continues to hold the securities received, the interest earned on them would continue to be lower until those securities mature. There may, therefore, continue to be an impact on the interest earned in future years, though there are greater uncertainties around predicting the impact that will be experienced in the future years. Of course, this does not take into account the positive impact of mitigating measures and the overall impact of the change in the environment which has happened, and is still happening, in the context of the NDX and the recent private exchange. We do not anticipate that there would be any material impact on capital.