INTERNATIONAL – It was the year central banks jumped back into the fray, cutting interest to deal with a slowdown driven by a trade war and subsequent decline in manufacturing.
Some, like the Federal Reserve, had at least made some headway on rate hikes before 2019, creating room to loosen amid the weakest growth since the financial crisis. But others, like the European Central Bank, found themselves in a more difficult position and had to cut benchmarks further below zero, stoking resentment about subzero rates.
2020 looks like it might be a quieter year for monetary policy. Fiscal may take up some of the lifting work, and growth prospects are looking a little brighter.