The Year of the Rat. 2020 marks the Year of the Rat, with the animal seen as a sign of wealth and surplus in Chinese culture. The rat is associated with the Earthly Branch in Chinese astrology, and the midnight hours. In terms of yin and yang, it is considered 'yang' and represents the beginning of a new day. People whose birth dates occurred in the Year of the Rat include those born in 1924, 1936, 1948, 1960, 1972, 1984, 1996 and 2008.