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Central Banks Just Starting Virus Fight With Record Low Rates

  • Pictet gauge of benchmarks drops to record after Fed, BOC cuts
  • Historic week hints at how crisis response will unfold
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BOC's Poloz Says G-7 Central Bank Coordination 'Extraordinarily High'

Global central bankers are cutting interest rates beyond their financial crisis-era lows, underscoring the hit to economies from the coronavirus even as investors question the healing powers of monetary policy.

The average of benchmark borrowing costs set by 38 key monetary authorities has now dropped to a record of around 3%, according to a measure compiled by Banque Pictet & Cie. That follows this week’s actions by the Federal Reserve and Bank of Canada to reduce rates by half a percentage point, and easing by the Reserve Bank of Australia too.