RTÉ: Prof Philip Lane to be next CBoI Governer


That’s exactly why the Governor says repossessions are desirable as a last resort. So mortgages are not one way bets on the property market.

independent.ie/business/per … 89919.html


Lane’s successor at CBoI sounds eminently qualified and no friend of McCanny’s. Expect no loosening of mortgage restrictions until housing supply increases to meet demand.

Clearly not our politicians choice. Is this Frankfurt’s call? Who really controls these appointments? Even Trump can’t get his man into the Fed.




but as head of their version in NZ, has he not overseen a massive property bubble there too, which is close to bursting?!


He was head of NZ Treasury i.e. the Department of Finance. I don’t think he can be blamed for the housing bubble there. Fiscal policy was restrained but other pressures drove the bubble.

This suggests he did what he could to tame the politicians.


New governor may be well qualifed but, uh, maybe keep him away from web design…


Indo headline gets it arseways.

Of course, he’s saying “if you want to spend more on the nurses and teachers, OK that’s a reasonable political choice but don’t think you can fund it by dumping more of your bonds on the ECB. I will be the chief economist there but I won’t be wearing a green jersey. The ECB bailed you out with QE but you’ve reached your limit. You should be saving for a rainy day”

Our media don’t understand and our politicians aren’t listening. We heard lots of ideas for spending public money during the recent election campaigns. Did anyone hear an idea about increasing taxes? Oh yeah, 10% voted for carbon taxes!



New Zealand’s public service watchdog has issued findings against the man set to become the Governor of the Central Bank of Ireland this September.

The State Services Commission criticised Gabriel Makhlouf’s “clumsy” handling of embarrassing budget leaks last month.

Mr Makhlouf initially said the leaks resulted from systematic and deliberate hacking.

However, it soon emerged that the treasury had not fallen victim to a sophisticated cyber-attack, but had accidentally published budget details on its website.


State Services Commissioners damning comments on Makhlouf

The investigation by the SSC has found that Treasury Secretary Gabriel Makhlouf acted unreasonably in relation to the claimed Treasury hack.

In the press conference, Commissioner Peter Hughes was basically damning of Makhlouf. Some key takeaways were:

  • Makhlouf refuses to accept he did anything wrong, and has not apologised. He rejects the findings of the SSC report.
  • Hughes expects Makhlouf should have offered his resignation in response to the failure by Treasury to keep Budget information secure, and his unreasonable responses to it
  • Hughes got legal advice on whether he could sack Makhlouf but this incident by itself was not enough to sack him, taking into account his eight years of service
  • If Makhlouf wasn’t finishing today, he would have looked at some sort of formal disciplinary action such as a formal warning
  • Hughes said that Makhlouf’s reputation was deservedly damaged by what he did, and that Hughes public comments are designed to put on the record that his behaviour was unreasonable and not of the standard expected
  • Hughes referred to the international media interest in Makhlouf. It will be interesting to see what happens in Ireland now.
  • Hughes said that short of putting Makhlouf in “public stocks” he is doing everything he can to make clear his dissatisfaction with what happened
  • A key mantra from Hughes was mistakes will happen but he expects CEs to own it, fix it and learn from it. Makhlouf seems unwilling to accept ownership what happened and was too focused on the actions of those who accessed the information and not the actions of the agency he runs that made the information public by mistake.

What is also interesting is the report makes clear that Makhlouf told Robertson that the information came from searches on the Treasury website. This should have been enough information for Robertson to push back against the suggestion it was a criminal hack. Instead Robertson smeared National with his own press release.



@Open_Window Wow, that’s a lot more damning. Reminds me of Patrick Neary in 2006 refusing to take any responsibility


Makhlouf Is a very curious appointment. No Central Banking experience. A career civil servant, not an economist. Gordon Brown’s Private Secretary. A Brit on the ECB Governing Council during Brexit (he’ll take a Cypriot passport as if that matters)

How did he beat a field including Sharon Donnery whom we had been pushing for the top supervisory job in Europe? When was the last time the government passed over such an obvious case for gender-based appointment?

Plus, he was badly caught out spinning about a “hack” in NZ.


Despite the public denials, I doubt this story is smoke without fire. NB the sensitivity about national prerogative. Will Makhlouf hold the line on mortgages? If so, he will seriously disappoint those who appointed him.


This story won’t go away. The Central Bank Commission has discussed how to handle it. Sounds like some members remain to be convinced;

The discussions by the commission centred on how best to aid Mr Makhlouf in his new role rather than featuring any effort to derail his appointment, the person said. Though some members have more concerns than others, as a group they see a planned statement by Mr Makhlouf on the affair when he takes up the role as key to drawing a line under it, strengthening his position and ensuring the Central Bank remains unharmed, the person said.

The government line is that Mr Makhlouf

“was selected as the new governor following a competitive, international process

But not an independent process, it seems. The selection was made by a panel with only one international member - Sir Nicholas Macpherson, a former Permanent Secretary to the UK Treasury. Which is awkward because I assume Sir Nicholas had to recuse himself in the case of Gabriel Makhalouf who was his successor as Permanent Private Secretary to Gordon Brown!

Makes it all the more surprising the Irish members preferred Makhalouf to a much better qualified Irish woman, Sharon Donnery, who was deemed highly suitable to become the first European Banking Supervisor.

Maybe there is something in the Irish Times speculation that

Members of the the commission see the need for a strong, independent governor as especially important, as potential conflicts loom over issues such as mortgage rules, the person said. Taoiseach Leo Varadkar said last month that he’d like to see some Central Bank rules limiting mortgages relaxed, to help people to buy homes.