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One of the hallmarks of the post GFC era has been the collective market belief that central banks are all powerful and omniscient, even as the political actors have displayed a strong propensity for vacillation   the extreme accommodation which many of them have deployed has a) in many cases not delivered a meaningful and durable boost to their 


 


and more importantly b) their fretting about not having much in the way ofpolicy ‘ammunition’ in the event that a sharper downturn in theglobal  at pains to emphasize that while they see downside risks to the global outlook, they remain optimistic, and even if those risks crystallize, they 


However a closer inspection of the developed world central bank narratives over the quarter suggests that there is in fact far much    a narrative that emphasized removing accommodation as recently as   evidence


videncethatcentr centralbanks arbanksareprimarilyconcerned primarilyconcernedthat the asset


prices ‘bubbles’, which their unconventional post-GFC policies have   


 as had been hoped, and in combination withpost GFC regulatory 


  which highlighted deep divisions between the doves, or rather monetary  chilly economic winds from China and the rest of the world, and on the    


What was perhaps more poignant were the contributions from ECB’s Ollie Rehn and Bank of Canada’s Wilkins. As is well known, the Fed is this year conducting a long term strategic review of its  which could have substantial consequences for the way it conducts and communicates monetary policy.Rehn’s intervention steers iin


nthesame


direction, though clearly leans quite heavily against Draghi’s doctrine of hefty deployment of rhetoric and ‘whatever it takes’, despite the rather obvious point that it has managed little better than the BoJ  any signs of a meaningful uptrend. Rehn was quite blunt in suggestingthat ECBpolicy has inprinciple failed to deliver, even if his language was a somewhat conditional. He noted that “the interdependence of  to have weakened in recent years”, and “should this phenomenonprove to be lasting, it would imply a weakening of the impact monetary policy exerts  to say “One explanation for this is that... trust in  


  may have eroded” and called for a fundamental review: “Naturally, this would not mean questioning the primary objective of price stability, but it would indeed entail a cindeed entail a comprehensive r view of the g principles, key assumptions and tools used for the implementation of monetary policy.”Given that this year will not only see Draghi’s departure, but also


 ehensive review of the guiding


many others leaving the ECB council, a shift in policy strategy looks very likely.


ECB


9 | ADMISI - The Ghost In The Machine | March/April 2019


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