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UK names financial regulator Andrew Bailey to succeed Carney as BoE governor


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UK names financial regulator Andrew Bailey to succeed Carney as BoE governor

The U.K. on Dec. 20 named Financial Conduct Authority CEO Andrew Bailey to succeed Mark Carney as governor of the Bank of England.

Bailey, whose appointment to an eight-year term is effective from March 16, 2020, will be entrusted with steering the U.K. central bank through a potentially challenging period with the country due to enact its withdrawal from the European Union, a process known as Brexit, in 2020.

Bailey is expected to have a "somewhat more moderate" view on Brexit, according to MUFG Bank Ltd. analysts. They noted the rejection of former BoE deputy governor Minouche Shafik for her stance against Brexit and of Prime Minister Boris Johnson's former economic adviser, Gerard Lyons, who strongly supported Brexit.

Like Carney, Bailey is expected to favor no change in interest rates amid a slowdown in the British economy and prolonged Brexit uncertainty, according to James Rossiter, head of global macro strategy at TD Securities.

"It is important to me that the bank continues to work for the public by maintaining monetary and financial stability and ensuring that financial institutions are safe and sound," Bailey said.

The BoE on Dec. 19 kept its key interest rate unchanged at its final monetary policy meeting of 2019 and downgraded its projection for fourth-quarter GDP growth to 0.1% from 0.2% previously.

Bailey has more than 30 years' experience across areas of monetary policy at the BoE, including as executive director for banking services and chief cashier, as well as head of its special resolution unit. Bailey also served as the governor's private secretary, and head of the international economic analysis division in monetary analysis.

In July 2016, Bailey became CEO of the FCA, which is the conduct regulator for 59,000 financial services firms and financial markets in the U.K. and the prudential regulator for over 18,000 of those firms.

Carney's term was due to end Jan. 31, 2020, but now is extended to March 15, 2020, to ensure a smooth transition.

Carney said he was delighted to welcome back Bailey to the BoE. "Andrew is widely and deeply respected for his leadership managing the financial crisis, developing the new regulatory frameworks, and supporting financial innovation to better serve U.K. households and businesses," Carney said. "Over the years, I benefited greatly from his support and wise counsel."

News of Bailey's appointment followed the BoE's acknowledgement that a third-party supplier misused the audio feed of a number of press conferences before they had been officially broadcast. The bank clarified that the breach did not involve the release of market-sensitive statements of its policy committees.