Mark Carney: A common touch, an uncommon task   Leave a comment

An excellent  profile of Canada’s Central Banker and head of the Financial Stability Board.

“It’s very important [that] people understand the broader economic forces, and what realistic time frames there are for these forces to play out,” he tells me. “Unfortunately, in some countries, the range of policy options they have, given those broader forces and given their starting position, are pretty limited, and it’s a question of choosing the least bad option in the end. But that should take place in as informed a way as possible.”

His strong belief that the public must understand and support steps that their elected leaders take to right the global economy, combined with a steadily growing public profile, have provoked whispers in Ottawa that the next logical realm for Mr. Carney’s career might be politics.

There is no indication he entertains thoughts of a political career down the road and, even if he did, he couldn’t say so. The role of central banker is independent from the political process but, especially in times like these, people need to be sure the Governor and the government he serves are on the same page. Still, some commentators have hailed him as a rare truth-teller in Ottawa, unafraid to speak in unvarnished terms during an era dominated by spin and message control.

Yet, on questions about his long-term ambitions, he has mastered the art – crucial to the job – of keeping certain cards close to his chest. For policy, that means being clear about economic conditions and trends, but refusing to spell out exactly where interest rates are headed. Personally, that means insisting that Mark Carney, whose first terms at both the central bank and the FSB end about three years from now, is just too busy to think about what might come next.

via Mark Carney: A common touch, an uncommon task – The Globe and Mail.

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