Italy's Bini Smaghi to join ECB board

Lorenzo Bini Smaghi, 48, the head of the Italian Finance Ministry's international department looks set to replace a fellow Italian on the board of the European Central Bank after a unanimous decision on Thursday 17 February.

The appointment helps maintain the hold of big countries such as Germany, France and Italy on the ECB's six-member executive board.

Last week CentralBankNet re-published a letter by Professor Francesco Giavazzi and Professor Charles Wyplosz in which they said "This year, it

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