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Report: Germany to endorse Merkel economic adviser to ECB board

Germany is planning to endorse government adviser Isabel Schnabel as its candidate to replace outgoing European Central Bank Executive Board member Sabine Lautenschläger, Bloomberg News reported, citing German newspaper Süddeutsche Zeitung.

Schnabel has been part of Chancellor Angela Merkel's council of economic advisers since 2014. She and Deutsche Bundesbank Vice President Claudia Buch were seen as the two leading contenders for the post, Bloomberg said.

The appointment is subject to approval by eurozone finance ministers, European lawmakers and EU heads of state. Germany's endorsement is expected to get the green light even though the country does not have an explicit right to the post given its economic influence across the bloc, according to the report.

Lautenschläger is due to step down from the Executive Board on Oct. 31, long before her term expires in January 2022. While the ECB did not provide a reason for Lautenschläger's resignation, market observers pointed out her lack of support for further monetary policy easing by the central bank.

Schnabel's appointment could alter Germany's influence on the ECB in a "more constructive way" given her economic skills, wrote Carsten Brzeski, chief economist at ING Germany, in a note. He noted that Schnabel "has been rather supportive of the ECB's monetary policy decisions of the last years."