Bank of Canada names insider economist as deputy governor

Thu Feb 21, 2013 4:18pm EST
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By Randall Palmer

OTTAWA (Reuters) - Larry Schembri, a Bank of Canada economist with international expertise, will become one of the central bank's deputy governors on its rate-setting council starting next week, the bank said on Thursday.

Schembri, 55, is an academic who currently coordinates the bank's contributions to the Financial Stability Board of the Group of 20 leading economies. He will replace Jean Boivin, who moved to the finance ministry. Schembri's appointment is effective next Monday.

The bank has still to replace Governor Mark Carney, who will leave on June 1 to head up the Bank of England starting in July.

"Larry's expertise of monetary theory and policy in open economies, and profound understanding of the international monetary system make him an exceptional addition to governing council," Carney said in a statement.

"Furthermore, his dedicated efforts in recent years in support of the bank's financial stability function have contributed greatly, not only to the bank, but also to the important work of the Financial Stability Board."

In addition to the governor and senior deputy governor, the governing council has four deputies.

The Bank of Canada is more of a closed shop than other western central banks. Its top officials aim to speak with one voice and it does not release minutes that would indicate if they are hawkish or dovish, though an insider could be seen as less likely to rock the boat.

"He's a long-time serving member of the Bank of Canada, an internal appointment, so probably we can't expect to see too much of a change in terms of how that will impact policy at the central bank," said Mazen Issa, macro strategist at TD Securities.   Continued...

A sign framed by maple leaves is pictured in front of the Bank of Canada building in Ottawa July 17, 2012. REUTERS/Chris Wattie