Mario Draghi succeeds Antonio Fazio as Bank of Italy governor

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Friday, December 30, 2005

Fazio has stepped down after an investigation into his role in a controversial bank takeover. Mario Draghi is to fill his shoes. Draghi's former job was managing director of the investment bank Goldman Sachs. Draghi will serve a six year term under a new law that set term limits for the Central banks governor passed last week.

Draghi, who is 58, has had senior government positions in the past including director general of the Italian treasury. He was born in Rome and earned a doctorate in economics from MIT in 1976. After earning his degree he taught at the University of Florence until 1991. During this time Draghi was an Executive Director of the World Bank. During his tenure as director general of the treasury he carried out extensive privatisation and was appointed chairman of the Italian Committee for Privatisations. Analysts say he has a good reputation but "Draghi has a tough job to restore the Bank of Italy's credibility, but he is appreciated internationally and has done a lot of jobs and done them well," said Luigi Speranza, an economist with BNP Paribas.

Lorenzo Codogno, an economist with Bank of America, looks forward to Draghi's tenure as the governor of the central bank "His appointment should lead to a more open Italian bank market which will, in the end, mean Italians have to pay less for their bank services."