James Weir at Stuff reports:
Reserve Bank Governor-in-waiting Graeme Wheeler was once touted as a potential World Bank president and gained fame for telling his boss, Paul Wolfowitz, to resign during what was seen as a civil war at the World Bank.
Wheeler’s appointment to take over at the central bank when Alan Bollard steps down on September 25 was welcomed yesterday, even though many had expected deputy governor Grant Spencer to win the top post.
Spencer may be disappointed and it is not clear if he will stay at the central bank, given Wheeler may serve at least one, possibly two, five-year terms. Wheeler has a strong international reputation, especially in world financial markets.
He takes over what is arguably one of the most important roles in the economy as the sole final decisionmaker on monetary policy: what to do with official interest rates and when.
I’ve only heard good things about Wheeler, and from all accounts he should prove to be an excellent Reserve Bank Governor. It is a very important role, and one that can come under considerable political pressure also.