Davos, January 19, 2024 — Christine Lagarde, President of the European Central Bank (ECB), is scheduled to deliver her final address at the World Economic Forum (WEF) Annual Meeting in Davos on Friday at 10:00 GMT. Following her participation in panel discussions on “How to Trust Economics” and “Uniting Europe’s Markets” earlier in the week, Lagarde will join a panel discussion focused on “The Global Economic Outlook.”
During this concluding appearance, policymakers are expected to deliberate on the delicate balance required to address growth and inflation concerns. Lagarde’s insights will be closely scrutinized for any indications regarding the Euro area’s growth and inflation outlook, with potential implications for future policy decisions.
Although Lagarde is anticipated to refrain from discussing monetary policy during her commentary on the economic outlook, given the ECB’s entry into its “blackout period” ahead of next week’s policy meeting, her remarks are likely to influence market sentiments. In a Bloomberg interview on Wednesday, Lagarde hinted at a potential rate cut by the summer, leading to a recalibration of early rate cut expectations in the markets.
Despite Lagarde’s forward-looking statements, ECB policymakers have consistently emphasized their commitment to data-dependent interest rate decisions, pushing back against aggressive rate cut expectations. The ECB maintained its rates for the second consecutive meeting in December, concurrently revising down growth and inflation forecasts.
Born in Paris in 1956, Christine Lagarde assumed the role of ECB President on November 1, 2019. Prior to her current position, she served as the Chairman and Managing Director of the International Monetary Fund from 2011 to 2019. Lagarde’s extensive career also includes senior ministerial roles in the Government of France, including Minister of the Economy, Finance and Industry (2007–2011).
As Lagarde addresses the global economic outlook at Davos, market participants eagerly await insights into the ECB’s stance on future policy decisions amidst the prevailing economic challenges.