IMF Raises Concerns Over US Debt: 'Something Will Have To Give'

The International Monetary Fund (IMF) has recently raised alarms over the fiscal health of the United States, with potential repercussions for the global economy.

What Happened: The IMF has voiced serious concerns about the sustainability of U.S. fiscal policies and their implications for both national and international economic stability, The Hill reported on Wednesday.

The IMF’s World Economic Outlook points to the U.S.’s strong economic performance but warns that it is driven by fiscal measures that are not sustainable long-term. The report, released on Tuesday, draws attention to the potential effects on global funding costs and the process of disinflation.

"This raises short-term risks to the disinflation process, as well as longer-term fiscal and financial stability risks for the global economy since it risks pushing up global funding costs," it continued.

"Something will have to give,” the report wrote.

An upward revision of the U.S. economic growth forecast to 2.7 percent in 2024 was announced, despite concerns over strong demand in an overheated economy. The IMF’s chief economist, Pierre-Olivier Gourinchas, has called for a cautious and gradual approach to policy easing by the Federal Reserve.

See Also: Bond Yields Surge To 6-Month Highs As Likelihood Of No-Landing Scenario Increases: UBS Warns Of Potential Fed Rate Hikes To 6.5%

This cautionary stance follows the suspension of the debt limit by Congress last spring, which has resulted in a multi-trillion-dollar increase in national debt, as per the Treasury Department. Furthermore, the Congressional Budget Office anticipates a substantial increase in the national deficit relative to GDP over the next three decades, highlighting the gravity of the IMF’s concerns.

Why It Matters: Recent statements by Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell indicate a delay in rate cuts due to stalled progress toward the 2% inflation target. Powell’s comments underscore the robustness of the U.S. economy but also signal a need for caution in policy easing.

Additionally, the IMF’s April 2024 World Economic Outlook projects the U.S. economy to outperform its advanced counterparts, reflecting an improved growth forecast for 2024.

However, a strategist from State Street warns that high-interest rates could lead to economic disruptions by 2025 if the Federal Reserve does not adjust its interest rate policy soon. This concern aligns with the IMF’s caution regarding the U.S. economy’s overheating and the need for a measured approach to policy changes.

Read Next: Retail Sales Rises More Than Expected In March, Indicate Strong Consumer Spending

Illustration via Shutterstock.

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