The Shape Of The Recovery

Editor Andrea Fiano's monthly letter to you, the reader.

JULY/AUGUST 2020 | VOL. 34  NO. 7

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Public health is key to monetary policy. Just a few months ago a statement like this one would have received very surprised comments, but recently the chairman of the Federal Reserve, Jerome Powell, made it a key element of his public comments and nobody was surprised. Coronavirus is dictating the agenda of governments, central banks, companies and—last but not least—individuals around the world.

As the whole world focuses on the depth and duration of the pandemic, and how and when the post-Coronavirus recovery will take place in our countries, we decided to focus the cover story on the first signs of economic recovery in China and the rest of the world. We did this not just in order to answer the key question of the moment, but also because at the moment medium- to long-term economic forecasting is very hard—perhaps impossible—due to the unprecedented level of uncertainty. We did it also in the hope that focusing on signs of economic recovery and crisis management will inspire and serve as a reference point to all parties involved.

Even the Federal Reserve concluded the latest meeting of its open market committee (which decides monetary policy) without any forward-looking forecast. No wonder then, that uncertainty about the future is prevalent among company employees and management alike. Companies are trying to survive without knowing how long and how deep the crisis will be.

In this issue we also present our annual awards for the best banks worldwide. Our selection process was built primarily on 2019 financial results of these institutions, but there is no doubt that winners are also the best equipped to handle the current crisis. Celebrating the achievers, the best banks, in a moment of such uncertainty reaffirms once more one of our key beliefs: At any time, in any economic condition, there are always some individuals and some institutions that manage to shine.

We celebrate those.

Andrea Fiano | Editor