10 OCTOBER 1987, Page 22


Buzzings in the head are an occupational disease to those who return from interna- tional monetary meetings. They are caused by buzzwords. Gender-aware was this year's newcomer, alongside debt- distressed and structural adjustment. Chairman Barber .Conable is nagging the World Bank into gender-awareness, and Mrs Conable is nagging Mr Conable. Offi- cials unreliably assert that the Common- wealth has a study group on the role of women in structural adjustment, in which they encounter rigidities. The Chancellor, proclaiming his plan for exchange rate management, said that adjustment should be made by moving the midpoint within the confines of the existing range (other- wise known as the bands or goalposts) I remember this one from 20 years ago, when we last wrestled with the paradox of fixed but adjustable exchange rates, Mr Lawson has reinvented the Crawling Peg.