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Jose Luis Magana, Associated Press
IMFC Chair and Singapore's Finance Minister Tharman Shanmugaratnam accompanied by International Monetary Fund (IMF) Managing Director Christine Lagarde speaks during a news conference at the World Bank Group-International Monetary Fund Annual Meetings at IMF headquarters in Washington, Saturday, Oct. 11, 2014.

WASHINGTON — World financial leaders are pledging to act boldly and ambitiously to give a weak and uneven global recovery some momentum, but they have often fallen short in the past when trying to follow through on their promises.

The pledge from the International Monetary Fund's policy-setting committee comes after a week of volatile swings in the financial markets. Investors worry that parts of Europe may be sliding into another recession.

The IMF called increasing economic growth an "utmost priority" during the fall meeting of the IMF and World Bank. In a closing statement Saturday from the steering committee of the 188-nation IMF, the finance leaders also committed to making the necessary structural changes that would boost growth.