Finance Minister Jim Flaherty should receive a short list of candidates to replace Bank of Canada Governor Mark Carney after a meeting of the central bank’s board of directors next week, said two people familiar with the plans.
Flaherty will get the list after the two-day meeting in Ottawa, said the people, who asked not to be identified because the discussions are private. Flaherty, who has said that the announcement could be made in April, will then interview the people on the short list, with the appointment to be approved by Prime Minister Stephen Harper and his cabinet.
The bank’s outside directors have been reviewing candidates after posting the job Jan. 7, following Carney’s surprise November announcement he would leave his job June 1 to take over the Bank of England. Analysts at JPMorgan Chase & Co. have said the most likely replacements are Senior Deputy Governor Tiff Macklem and Export Development Canada Chief Executive Officer Stephen Poloz.
“The sooner the leadership is clarified, the better,” David Watt, chief economist in Toronto at HSBC Bank Canada, said in a telephone interview. “You don’t necessarily want questions being asked about the Bank of Canada’s inflation-fighting credibility,” said Watt, a former senior economist at the central bank.
Bank of Canada spokeswoman Dale Alexander declined to comment. A spokesman for Flaherty didn’t immediately respond to a phone call and an e-mail seeking comment.
Whoever takes over from Carney must guide the world’s 11th largest economy through a sluggish expansion threatened by weak exports and record consumer debts. Carney and Macklem have kept the bank’s policy interest rate at 1 percent since September 2010, the longest pause since the 1950s, and the bank said in a March 6 statement that borrowing costs would probably “remain appropriate for a period of time.”
The government wanted to look at a broad pool of candidates, a person with knowledge of the process told Bloomberg News in January. Flaherty issued a statement Jan. 16 that said he would be directly involved in the selection. He said in an interview with Reuters that the announcement could come in April.
The job has a seven-year renewable term and the salary range for last year was C$431,800 ($424,900) to C$507,900. The job advertisement called for “unquestioned technical competence” in monetary policy and “a highly developed understanding of the financial sector,” as well as “exceptional communications skills” and ability in both English and French.
The central bank is mandated to run monetary policy aiming at a 2 percent target for inflation. Canada’s consumer price index has risen below that target pace for the past 10 months.
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