Ten years after the financial crisis monetary policymakers face a range of challenges as they pursue their mandates.
Different rates of recovery have led central banks to chart different courses for the normalization of monetary policy following a period in which most central banks used both conventional and unconventional monetary policy tools in response to the Great Recession. Whereas some central banks are approaching a neutral policy setting, others have yet to begin the process of removing policy accommodation.
Differences in economic conditions across countries and the associated settings for monetary policy present a range of challenges for policy makers. First, the different trajectories of monetary policy paths across countries in recent years has contributed to a divergence in interest rates across countries. This divergence has implications for exchange rates, trade, and ultimately economic activity in the global economy. Second, monetary policy actions and the buildup and eventual unwinding of central banks’ balance sheets from QE also have implications for capital markets and financial flows for advanced and emerging market economies as shifts in monetary policy in one country can create spillovers through financial markets affecting others. Third, the path for policy normalization looks very different relative to previous normalization periods as the natural rate of interest is viewed by most policymakers as being lower than in the past and many central banks are also faced with unwinding unconventional policy actions taken during the financial crisis. And finally, in the midst of charting a course for monetary policy to pursue their mandates, policymakers also must take into account influences of commodity and financial markets that can provide headwinds or tailwinds to economic activity and inflation dynamics.