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France’s Hollande Names Jouyet to Head Caisse Des Depots Fund

French President Francois Hollande named Jean-Pierre Jouyet, head of the country’s financial markets regulator, to run Caisse des Depots et Consignations, a state-run bank and investment fund.

The 58-year-old will become chief executive officer of CDC, government spokeswoman Najat Vallaud-Belkacem told reporters after the weekly cabinet meeting in Paris today. Jouyet, a top adviser to former socialist Prime Minister Lionel Jospin in the late 1990s before heading the French Treasury from 2000 to 2004, became head of market regulator AMF in 2008.

CDC, founded in the aftermath of the Napoleonic wars, manages tax-exempt deposits and helps fund public projects from housing to infrastructure. The Paris-based fund is also an investor in state-controlled companies such as La Poste and CNP Assurances SA, the country’s largest life insurer.

In his five-year term, Jouyet will have to define CDC’s involvement in Hollande’s plans to start a lender to aid small companies. Together with Paris-based La Banque Postale, CDC is also setting up a lender to municipalities to fill the gap left by the collapse of the Franco-Belgian bank Dexia SA.

CDC has total assets of 262 billion euros ($321 billion). Net income fell 90 percent to 206 million euros last year, hurt by writedowns on investments and losses from Dexia. By law, CDC pays the state dividends equal to a third of its annual profit.

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