This publication examines the application of the balance sheet approach (BSA) in financial vulnerability analysis of emerging market economies, including its conceptual framework, trends over the past decade including case studies, and related policy issues. This concept is being increasingly used in the IMF's analysis of debt-related vulnerabilities, as evidenced by a growing number of Article IV consultation reports providing applications to individual countries, as well as a large body of academic literature on financial crises and their origins.
The analysis of currency and maturity mismatches in sectoral balance sheets has increasingly become a regular element in the IMF's tool kit for surveillance in emerging market countries. This paper describes this so-called balance sheet approach and shows how it can be applied to detect vulnerabilities and shape policy advice. It also provides a broad-brushed overview of how balance sheet vulnerabilities have evolved over the past decade and cites a number of case studies.
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