Jean Boivin, the top aide at Canada’s finance department responsible for Group of 20 issues, isn’t seeking to return to the Bank of Canada as senior deputy governor, a person familiar with the matter said.
Boivin, associate deputy finance minister and a former deputy governor at the central bank, was seen by economists as among the strongest contenders to replace current no. 2 Tiff Macklem, who is leaving the Ottawa-based institution in May. Boivin, 41, didn’t apply for the job and isn’t among candidates that have been interviewed, the person said on condition they not be identified because the process isn’t public. Boivin declined to comment about whether he applied for the job.
Macklem’s replacement would be the highest profile appointment at the Bank of Canada since Governor Stephen Poloz took over June 3. The departures of Macklem and Poloz’s predecessor Mark Carney mark the first time the central bank has replaced its two top executives within a 12-month period.
Poloz’s tenure has coincided with a more dovish policy stance at the central bank. Statements from Poloz and his deputies highlighting persistently slow inflation have helped trigger an 8.6 percent drop in the Canadian dollar versus its U.S. counterpart over the past 12 months.
Macklem is leaving the central bank after being passed over for the top job. The senior deputy governor sits on the bank’s six-member governing council, which sets monetary policy for the world’s 11th largest economy. Until now, the senior deputy also oversaw the daily operations of the bank, although those responsibilities are being transfered to a new chief operating officer position.
Boivin, a student of former Federal Reserve Chairman Ben S. Bernanke at Princeton, was brought to the Bank of Canada in 2009 as an adviser to Carney. When he was appointed deputy governor in 2010, Carney said Boivin’s academic work had been “pushing the frontiers” of monetary economics. Boivin left his position at the central bank in 2012 for the finance department posting.
Other potential replacements for Macklem include three of the four deputies on the governing council: Agathe Cote, 56; Tim Lane, 59; and Larry Schembri 57, who joined the rate panel in February, 2013. John Murray, deputy since 2008, announced in December he will retire in April.
Spokesman Alexandre Deslongchamps said the Bank of Canada had no comment on the story, adding that the hiring process was being conducted by the bank’s independent directors.
In Macklem, the Bank of Canada is losing a policy maker with more than two decades of experience. He worked his way up in the research department through the 1990s and joined the rate-setting panel in December 2004 after a yearlong stint at the Department of Finance. He became senior deputy in July 2010, appointed to a seven-year term, after another tour at the Finance Department, this time as associate deputy minister, from 2007.
No senior deputy governor at the Bank of Canada has gone on to become governor in two decades, since Gordon Thiessen in 1994.
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