Women Central Bankers: The Unsteady March Of Diversity

In the 1970s women started getting appointed to central-bank policy committees, which set interest rates and in some cases supervise the banking system. Since then their numbers have remained low. The European Central Bank (ECB) currently has no women on its governing council. And no woman ever voted on Swiss monetary policy–or Italian or Dutch before those countries joined the ECB.

Some countries have been more progressive. From 2002 to 2011 nearly half the members of Norway’s policy board were women. America’s Federal Reserve has not done too badly, with six women and 11 men today. Yet the poor representation of women central bankers across the advanced economies suggests that in this respect the folk who love to give forward guidance to others are themselves living in the past.

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