WASHINGTON Feb 14 The International Monetary
Fund said talk about currency wars was overdone, playing down
concerns that easy monetary policies in advanced economies had
sparked dangerous devaluations.
"I think you're referring to the recent moves in exchange
rates, and the so-called talk of currency wars, which we feel is
overblown," IMF spokesman Gerry Rice told reporters on Thursday,
in response to a question about whether the Fund was concerned
about recent exchange rate movements.
"Our multilateral assessment does not indicate very
significant deviations from the fair value for the relevant
currencies," he said.
Rice's comments echoed those of IMF chief economist, Olivier
Blanchard, who said recently the Fund saw no problems with
countries' actions to get their economies back to health.
The Group of Seven rich nations released a statement earlier
this week designed to cool international currency tensions, a
topic likely to dominate a Group of 20 meeting of finance
ministers in Moscow this weekend.
Japan's new government has pressed for an aggressive
expansion of monetary policy to kickstart the economy and end
two decades of deflation, causing some concern about a sharply
The G7 nations said fiscal and monetary policies must be
directed at domestic economies and not at targeting exchange
Rice said the IMF was ready to facilitate a cooperative
approach on exchange rates among its members.
"Obviously there are (currency) developments to watch, with
an eye on a cooperative approach," Rice said. "The IMF will play