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IMF criticizes US budget sequestration again

"The budgetary procedure that is in place in the United States, which leads to a budgetary adjustment, seems to us absolutely inappropriate," Lagarde said.

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IMF Managing Director Christine Lagarde on December 6, 2011. (PAUL J. RICHARDS/AFP/Getty Images)

International Monetary fund chief Christine Lagarde does not think too highly of the United States' relatively new federal budget.

At an economists' conference in France's southern Aix-en-Provence, Lagarde said recent budget cuts, better known as the sequester, were inappropriate and could damage middle and long term growth.

"The budgetary procedure that is in place in the United States, which leads to a budgetary adjustment, seems to us absolutely inappropriate ... because it blindly affects certain expenditures that are essential to support medium and long term growth," Lagarde said.

The sequester is an automatic deficit reduction plan enacted in March because a stagnated Congress failed to agree on another plan of action.

This is not the first time the IMF has criticized the US budget in such a public manner. Back in June, the international organization of more than 180 nations called on the US government to stop sweeping budget cuts that have affected its military, flight traffic and even farmers. It called the sequestration "excessively rapid and ill-designed."

In its annual report the IMF set US economic growth to about 1.9 percent in 2013. But the group added that the largest economy in the world could grow an additional 1.75 percentage points if the US altered its fiscal policy, specifically the sequester.

http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/regions/americas/130707/imf-still-critical-us-budget-sequestration