Mario Draghi ended his term of office as President of the European Central Bank (ECB) on October 31, 2019. He was succeeded by Christine Lagarde, who, until a few months before, was head of the International Monetary Fund and previously Minister of the Economy in France. Lagarde is a lawyer by training, and over the years has acquired a great deal of experience in economic policy. She is recognized for her considerable diplomatic and mediation skills, and for her expertise in decision-making and institutional management.
Although it is probable that the substance of monetary policy will not change immediately on her arrival, Lagarde will immediately find herself dealing with growing tensions among the ECB Board of Directors, with members of several countries – including Austria, Holland and especially Germany – increasingly opposed to a monetary policy that they consider too expansive, despite the signs of a significant slowdown in real activity in their own economies.