López Obrador to Name Independent Economist to Mexico Central Bank

López Obrador to Name Independent Economist to Mexico Central Bank

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Mr. Heath, who specializes in econometrics and monetary policy, is widely seen as an orthodox economist. He would succeed deputy governor Manuel Ramos Francia, a Bank of Mexico veteran whose term finishes at the end of the year.

The nomination is expected to be made after Mr. López Obrador takes office on Dec. 1. The appointment would need approval in the Mexican Senate, where Mr. López Obrador’s party has a comfortable majority,

Mr. López Obrador, who won the July 1 presidential election by a landslide, will be able to appoint two more deputy governors and the central bank governor during his six-year term, potentially reshaping the Bank of Mexico’s board.

Alejandro Díaz de León was appointed governor in 2017 when Agustín Carstens, Mexico’s most respected economic official on the international stage, left before the end of his second term to head the Bank for International Settlements in Switzerland. Some analysts say Mr. Carstens’ departure left a vacuum that was hard to fill.

Some detractors of the incoming leftist leader fear he could eventually undermine the central bank’s autonomy, despite repeated assurances to the contrary from Mr. López Obrador.

The change of government administration comes at a time of uncertainty for the central bank, considered one of the most orthodox in Latin America. Inflation remains stubbornly above the bank’s 3% target , standing at 4.9% in mid-September, and the bank doesn’t expect it to get back to 3% until the first half of 2020.Inflation reached a 17-year high 6.8% last year, […]

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