The IMF's curious support for Macron's economic strategy


To the immense satisfaction of France's finance ministers, the International Monetary Fund recently lavished praise on the new French government's economic policies. Yet the IMF's comments on French policy run contrary to the organisation's own admissions over its past analytical failings, its change in economic thinking and much of its own internal research. Romaric Godin says this inevitably raises questions about whether the IMF was taking a political stance towards President Emmanuel Macron's new administration rather than giving economic analysis.

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The International Monetary Fund recently published the conclusions of its annual assessment of the state of the French economy. These conclusions, carried out as part of a routine mission under article IV of the institute's statutes, are often quite formulaic and typically attract relatively little interest. However, the IMF's latest verdict on France, published on July 17th, certainly did catch the eye. For in effect the Washington-based organisation produced a two-page eulogy based on the policy programme – rather than any real measures that have been announced – of new president Emmanuel Macron.