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Carney Needs Stiff Upper Lip to Match King: Chart of the Day

Carney Needs Stiff Upper Lip to Match King: Chart of the Day
Mark Carney, governor of the Bank of Canada, speaks to a joint meeting of the Canadian Club of Toronto and the Empire Club of Canada, in Ontario, Canada. Photographer: Norm Betts/Bloomberg

Bank of Canada Governor Mark Carney, the first foreigner who will head the Bank of England, likely will deliver more speeches than his predecessor, if history is any guide.

The CHART OF THE DAY shows that Carney, 47, has averaged almost twice as many speeches since his appointment in 2008 as Mervyn King, 64, the man he will replace on July 1 as leader of the 318-year-old institution.

Carney’s selection “probably reinforces the shift to greater BOE transparency,” Citigroup Inc. economists Michael Saunders and Dana Peterson wrote in a report on November 27. “As BOC governor, Carney has tended to give wide-ranging speeches to communicate on the outlook far more frequently than the BOE governor.”

In April 2009, Carney said the Bank of Canada would keep its benchmark overnight rate at a record low 0.25 percent until the end of the second quarter the following year, provided the inflation outlook remained stable. He raised the rate in June 2010 to 0.5 percent, and it’s now 1 percent.

Ben Bernanke made a similar commitment in August 2011 when he said the Federal Reserve would keep its policy rate near zero until at least mid-2013, a date he later extended by two years. The Bank of England hasn’t followed the Canadian model by specifying the length of its low-interest policy. Its key rate has been 0.5 percent since March 2009.

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