Governance

Marchenko's prize

Grigori Marchenko, the unassuming but hugely competent governor of the National Bank of Kazakhstan, has received recognition for his instrumental role in turning his country into the most prosperous economy in the region by winning Euromoney's 2003…

Tips for Tito?

Following the recent to-do over South African Reserve Bank governor Tito Mboweni's swelling pay package, and the subsequent support he received from his opposite number in the finance ministry, Trevor Manuel, Mboweni might do well to take a leaf out of…

Rick's leadership rewarded at the Solomon Islands

One person it was good to see at the IMF meeting in Dubai was Rick Houenipwela, the universally popular and respected governor of the Central Bank of the Solomon Islands. There's another governor who has been through a lot recently.

Non, je ne regrette rien

It may be the eve of Wim Duisenberg's departure from the ECB, but if anyone was hoping for a token show of contrition from the stern Dutchman for his occasional indiscretions, they will have been sorely disappointed.

Sweden spurns the euro

Europe's unifiers have been profoundly shaken by Sweden's unambiguous decision to steer well clear of the euro for the time being. Both the Riksbank and the ECB have since publicly been at pains to clarify that the result of the referendum will have no…

Ill wind blows at Riksbank

On a rather breezier note, in August the Riksbank paid out over $100,000 in compensation to a disgruntled employee. 44-year-old computer technician Goran Andervass had fallen out with one of his colleagues after being "provoked by a disgusting fart - a…

What's goin' on?

Bank of England MPC member Stephen Nickell has just accomplished the rather unenviable task of explaining what the switch from an inflation target based on the RPIX index to the HICP index, as used in Europe, actually means. Inflation indexes: who cares?…

Governors in a fix

A number of governors are in a tight spot. In the Philippines, the Supreme Court has dismissed the criminal charges filed against governor Rafael Buenaventura - but it's not over yet. In Zimbabwe, the central bank remains without a governor, despite the…

Trichet lays down the gauntlet

Subjected to a grilling by its Economic and Monetary Affairs Committee in one of the seemingly infinite rooms of the European Parliament's nightmarishly labyrinthine buildings in Brussels on September 11, Jean-Claude Trichet gingerly and with consummate…

Mboweni takes flak...

The admirable Tito Mboweni, governor of the South African Reserve Bank, is under bombardment as fellow countrymen splutter at his recent pay rise. Mboweni has been accused of double standards for accepting a pay rise of 9% this year and 12% last year …

...but aims high

But Mboweni has received political support - which is valuable since, some say, he has his eyes on the presidency when current president Thabo Mbeki's term ends in 2009 (Mboweni's current term ends in 2004).

Gerashchenko into politics

The global political establishment can now boast a couple more ex-heavyweight central bank governors to their number: Viktor Gerashchenko from Russia and Bimal Jalan from India. Gerashchenko, who resigned from Russia's central bank in March 2002 citing…

Jalan too

Bimal Jalan, having ceded power at the central bank to the capable hands of YV Reddy, will slip into what will surely be no less lively an occupation. He has now been nominated to the upper house of Parliament (contrasting with Gerashchenko who is to…

Afghan treasure hunt

Anwar-ul-Haq Ahady, the central bank governor in Afghanistan, has been on a treasure hunt - and was not disappointed. Together with the country's president, finance minister and justice minister, he descended into the subterranean expanse that lies…

Greenback's end...

The end of the greenback is nigh! On October 9 a new and improved version of what has hitherto been affectionately known as the "greenback" will enter into circulation, but the new $20 note will not actually be green. The background is to be a shade of …

...and Howard's end

Sir Howard Davies, who leaves the UK's Financial Services Authority at the end of this week to take up the job of head of the London School of Economics, sensibly ducks questions about whether he wanted to be governor of the Bank of England.

All's well in the euro zone

Contrary to incessant and repetitive media mutterings about the sickly euro zone economy, it would seem that in fact all is well. So well, in fact, that the ECB has decided that there is really no need for its forthcoming fortnightly meeting because…

Bank of Japan at the cutting edge

Toshihiko Fukui, Japan's central bank governor, keeps up with the times. He openly admits to entertaining his runaway addiction to the latest in mobile phone technology and is shortly to experience the unbridled pleasure of getting the NTT DoCoMo 505i…

Philippine central bankers to defend integrity

Four senior officials at the central bank in the Philippines, including the governor Rafael Buenaventura and his deputy Alberto Reyes, are getting heat from lawmen, accused of being "administratively liable of gross neglect of duty".

Cricketing King's unlikely heroes

When Mervyn King was the guest of honour last week at the lunch-time chat on BBC Radio 4's cricket programme "Test Match Special", he revealed his affection for - and knowledge of - the game as well as a certain ambition for socialite status. The…

Zimbabwe's central bankers urged to go

Things aren't getting any less desperate in Zimbabwe, which is in the thick of a crippling cash crisis, now that parliament is demanding that the central bank management just leave.

Donald Winn passes away

Fed old-timer Donald Winn sadly died at the age of 66 with pancreatic cancer after faithfully serving the central bank for almost half of his life. With 30 years on the clock, Winn had proved a precious asset to no less than four chairmen, in charge of…

Interview: Rene Smits

A recent little-noticed ruling by the European Court of Justice could have far-reaching implications for the European Central Bank. The former legal counsel at the Netherlands Bank discusses the consequences of this for ECB finances and governance, and…

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