May 7, 2012Doug Hadden
Accountant General of Antigua and Barbuda Elected FreeBalance International Steering Committee Chair
FreeBalance is pleased to announce the election of Dr. Cleopatra Gittens, the Accountant General of Antigua and Barbuda as Chair of the FreeBalance International Steering Committee (FISC). Dr. Gittens was elected chair at the FISC conference held in Istanbul, Turkey in January.
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Roadmap to the 21st Century: Aligning PFM Reform and Social Media
Join FreeBalance at the annual ICGFM event in Miami to learn about “The [Social] Future of Public Financial Management”. The FreeBalance presentation will explain the effects of social media, transparency, mobile, gamification and the “Consumerization of IT” in government. The presentation is part of the International Consortium on Governmental Financial Management (ICGFM) Conference on April 29-May4, 2012, 2012 in Miami, Florida. The FreeBalance presentation takes place on April 30th at 11:00 a.m.
Georgian State Treasury Hosts Workshop on Treasury and External Financing Reforms
A three-day PEMPAL Treasury Community of Practice (TCOP) workshop was held in Tbilisi, Georgia on February 27-29, 2012 on public finance reform progress related to Treasury systems and external financing. Fifty participants from ten countries attended (Albania, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Georgia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Moldova, Tajikistan and Ukraine). Experts from the World Bank provided information on regional and international developments and technical support to the discussions. The meeting was hosted by the State Treasury of the Ministry of Finance of Georgia who proved to be warm and wonderful hosts.
The Unintended Consequences of Increases in the Minimum Wage
Most countries around the world have some form of minimum wages. Policymakers have often argued that raising the minimum wage increases the income of low-income workers, and therefore can be used as a tool to reduce poverty and inequality. Some policymakers also argue that wage increases can improve workers’ productivity (Levine, 1992; Raff and Summers, 1987) because they lead to increases in work effort, reductions in job turnover and more on-the-job training (Katz, 1987). However, several studies find that increases in minimum wages without commensurate increases in labor productivity could lead to job losses in the formal sector.
The facts are in. 50 percent of adults worldwide have an account at a formal financial institution. 21 percent of women save using a formal account. 16 percent of adults in Sub-Saharan Africa use mobile money. These are just a few of the thousands of data points now available in the Global Financial Inclusion (Global Findex) database, the first of its kind to measure people’s use of financial products across economies and over time.