First and foremost, I would like to welcome all of you to 2009 and hope that you have enjoyed the holidays. After being away for so long I thought it best to start the year with a light but meaningful post.
As a follow up to 2008: Year of the Dove I have decided to create a list that gives the reader a snapshot of global central bank policy in 2008. Some of these men may have been named ‘most influential’ people by Newsweek, but on Al-Hamour these men are merely doves incognito. They are commended for their dovish efforts in trying to quell their respective financial markets and economies by using interest rates as their weapon of choice.
I have ranked each central bank by the percentage change for the 2008. This means that if at the beginning of 2008 the interest rate was 10% and finished the year at 5%, I would consider this a 50% drop in rate as opposed to an absolute 5%. In addition, interest rate cuts during the first quarter of 2009 will not be taken into consideration but it looks like the European Central Bank and the Bank of England are in the lead for this year’s list.
The list includes 55 entries but I have decided to only provide more detail on a few.
If you would like the sources of all the rates used for the different countries please email me and I will send you the information.
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I like this post. If you would consider all changes in monetary policy, I think Sheikh Salem will be ranked Number 1 in 2008!!
He was tightening the policy up to June. Then from June to December easing the policy with all it means.
Plus the KWD/USD rate changing!!
Shiekh Salem is #1, please!!
Thanks,I just knew Hong Kong is a country not part of China 🙂
and Venezuela here I come 😛
@Ali: Thank you for your kind words. I think you make some great points that some people overlook. The central bank has other tools at its disposal than just interest rates. It would also be difficult from a mathematical point of view to come out with one number. The only ‘real’ way to find out is to see how hard our economy lands.
@momo: I believe technically HK is under the sovereign jurisdiction of China but with control over its borders and Monetary policy falling under that. Its official name is Hong Kong Special Administrative Region [HK SAR].
As for Venezuela, I hear the locals are ‘friendly’ but you also have to walk around with a bodyguard 🙂
LLLOOOLLLL! Very very funny post, and I can only imagine what you could accomplish if you were creating fiscal policies instead of researching and publishing these profiles!
welcome back.keep’em coming.
@Intlxpatr: Well for one I wouldn’t bail out every institution that seems to be incompetent. Imagine if we turned in a Japan!
@KTDP: Thanks! Glad to be back 🙂
Nice article. Thanks MAR.
Hows the black swan coming along? I thought as an economic analyst this would have been the last book to recommend.
@shai: Well I actually finished the book, but haven’t found anything to replace it [not enough time to start a new book now]. Well I think Taleb has a something to offer and can enlighten the reader on how to think about risks. I think it is very appropriate given the environment.
For some good books that will give you a good history on how part of this mess was created read Liar’s Poker by Michael Lewis.