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The Washington Consensus ReconsideredTowards a New Global Governance$
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Narcís Serra and Joseph E. Stiglitz

Print publication date: 2008

Print ISBN-13: 9780199534081

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: May 2008

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199534081.001.0001

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Towards a New Modus Operandi of the International Financial System

Towards a New Modus Operandi of the International Financial System

(p.150) 9 Towards a New Modus Operandi of the International Financial System
The Washington Consensus Reconsidered

Daniel Cohen

Oxford University Press

The Bretton Woods system was conceived as a fixed exchange rate regime, allowing for a few devaluations, with the IMF supplying a line of credits to countries in ‘transitory’ difficulties. As capital mobility expanded, the system has radically changed. The role of the IMF is no longer to finance ‘transitory’ balance of payments disequilibria, which almost by definition can be dealt with by financial integration. As a result of capital mobility, however, orderly resolution of sovereign debt crises has also become more difficult in the past decade. The political difficulty of setting up an international court with authority over the handling of sovereign debt has also appeared be unattainable. This chapter reports a new modus operandi rather than a big bang approach to the reform of the system.

Keywords:   Bretton Woods, exchange rate regime, sovereign debt, highly indebted poor countries, IMF, commodities

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