>> International Economics
Between 1990 and 1996, the southeast Asian countries of Singapore, Korea, Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, and Thailand were among the most financially solvent. For decades, these countries had maintained a stable currency and enhanced their globalization efforts. Following this prosperous period, Thailand, South Korea, Indonesia, Malaysia, and the Philippines dropped to net outflows of U.S. $12.1 billion in 1997. Indonesia's poverty line rose from 22.5 million to 118.5 million. In Thailand, the economy outsourcing policy resulted in some 800,000 workers becoming unemployed. South Korea's unemployment numbers exceeded two million by the end of 1999. These were crippling statistics. The International Monetary Fund (IMF) played a major role in helping these economies recover from the crisis. It committed U.S. $11.2 billion to Indonesia and U.S. $34 billion to Thailand. Many have criticized the IMF's assistance to southeast Asia during this time. Despite the criticism, however, the IMF emerged as a major player in providing assistance to southeast Asia. How could economies with such a dynamic growth history decline within a matter of months? (75 - 100 words) What characteristics and other factors contributed to these crises? (75-100 words) Was the IMF assistance needed, or was there another way for these countries to recover?(75-100 words) Case Study: What Caused the Southeast Asian Crises of the Late 1990s?