Pinnacles And Plateaus

Global Financemagazine editor Andrea Fiano's message to readers about what to expect in this month's issue.

October 2018 | VOL. 32 NO. 9

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Ithas become this magazine’s tradition to publish our Best Global Bank awards and Central Banker Report Cards in the October issue, to dovetail with the meetings of the IMF and World Bank, taking place this year in Bali.

This annual congregation is more than a ritual meeting; it is a set of formal and informal discussions on the world economy that has no equal for the number and sophistication of participants. Most central bankers and many leading bank executives attend, creating a rare forum to discuss the world economy and its most pressing issues with people who are keen and close observers—and frequently powerful influencers. It makes sense to honor the banks and bankers at the pinnacle of the sector as they converge in Indonesia.

Assessing central bankers is no easy task. Each country has unique economic and political conditions, and the central banks have varying mandates. For many years we have taken up this challenge, assessing central bankers’ impact not by a single metric but with an interacting set of criteria reflective of the complexities of the post: not just which economies are growing the most, but how each governor meets his or her mandate given the bank’s freedom from political influence, the robustness of the home economy and its role in the regional and global markets, and of course wider macroeconomic trends. Each year, governors receiving top grades of A or A- represent countries that differ greatly.

This month’s cover story looks at the wider global context central bankers are operating in at the moment: the consensus forecast for growth and the major concerns. It is widely expected that, at least in the more advanced economies, growth will level off in a year or two. Like all forecasts, this one is contingent on many unknowns. Tariffs seem to be the most prominent concern; emerging markets are already showing signs of volatility. One thing is sure: the job of a central banker is not getting any easier.

Andrea Fiano | Editor