International Monetary Fund (IMF)
(banking/finance/foreign exchange) An international financial institution proposed at the 1944 Bretton Woods Conference and established in 1946 that seeks to stabilize the international monetary system as a sound basis for the orderly expansion of international trade. Specifically, among other things, the Fund monitors exchange rate policies of member countries, lends them foreign exchange resources to support their adjustment policies when they experience balance of payments difficulties, and provides them financial assistance through a special “compensatory financing facility” when they experience temporary shortfalls in commodity export earnings. Membership in the fund is a prerequisite to membership in the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development. Contact: International Monetary Fund; 700 19th Street NW; Washington, DC 20431 USA; Tel:  (202) 623-7000; Web: www.imf.org.
See Bretton-Woods Agreement; International Bank for Reconstruction and Development; World Bank Group.