Hormats, Lindsay, and Bosworth discussed the role of the IMF in the Asian financial crisis at a National Issues Forum at Brookings on February 17. This article contains their three viewpoints.
The International Monetary Fund has three important roles in international financial crises. The first is to help countries to fashion programs to rest or e currency and market stability. The second, under certain circumstances at least, is as a lender of last resort. The third is as a rallier of others in support of actions necessary to end the crisis. The IMF is far from perfect in determining the conditions required for countries to get out of difficulties. But it is far better at doing so than any single government—and even if it weren’t , no single government would want that job, for very good political reasons.