Goldman Sachs Appoints ECB Researcher Huw Pill as Chief European Economist

Goldman Sachs Group Inc. (GS) hired Huw Pill of the European Central Bank to replace Erik Nielsen as its chief European economist.

Pill will join the investment bank on Aug. 22 in London after a decade at the Frankfurt-based ECB, where he was most recently deputy director general of research, according to an internal Goldman Sachs memo sent to employees today and obtained by Bloomberg News.

The recruiting of Pill comes a week since UniCredit SpA (UCG) named Nielsen its global chief economist after 15 years at Goldman Sachs. It marks a further revamping of the U.S. bank’s economic division following Jim O’Neill’s departure as its chief at the end of last year to chair Goldman Sachs Asset Management.

Pill has also led the ECB’s monetary policy stance division as well as working at the Bank of England and teaching at Harvard University, the memo said. He holds a degree from Oxford University and a Ph.D from Stanford University.

Goldman Sachs’s economics team, which already includes former ECB economist Natacha Valla, currently expects the central bank to raise its key interest rate to 1.75 percent by the end of this year from 1.25 percent. It predicts the euro area economy will grow 2.1 percent this year with inflation averaging 2.6 percent.

Source: Goldman Sachs via Bloomberg

Former Goldman Sachs Chief European Economist Erik Nielsen. Close

Former Goldman Sachs Chief European Economist Erik Nielsen.

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Source: Goldman Sachs via Bloomberg

Former Goldman Sachs Chief European Economist Erik Nielsen.

O’Neill was succeeded in January by Dominic Wilson and Jan Hatzius at the top of Goldman Sachs’s economics research division. U.K. economist Ben Broadbent left it in March after being appointed to the Bank of England’s Monetary Policy Committee. He was replaced by Kevin Daly.

Pill is the latest central banker to enter the private sector. Barclays Capital said yesterday it had hired Brian Madigan, the Federal Reserve’s former top staff adviser on interest-rate policy, to provide counsel on economic research and regulation. Daiwa Capital Markets Europe said last month it had employed former ECB economist Tobias Blattner to cover the euro region.

Sophie Bullock, a London-based spokeswoman for Goldman, confirmed the contents of the memo announcing Pill’s hiring.

To contact the reporter on this story: Simon Kennedy in London at skennedy4@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Craig Stirling at cstirling1@bloomberg.net

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