International

Trump Could Queer The Deal For Quarles To Chair The FSB

U.S. President Donald Trump’s behavior at foreign summits this summer could have spoiled the chances of a top Federal Reserve official to lead the Financial Stability Board (FSB).

According to the Wall Street Journal, Randal Quarles, the Fed’s vice chairman for bank supervision, was the front-runner to chair the FSB, which was created in 2009 to monitor and advise governments on financial regulation. Its current chairman, Bank of England Governor Mark Carney, ends his term in December.

But after Trump’s performance at the Group of Seven summit in Canada in June and the NATO summit in Brussels in July, officials in several Western European capitals believe an American shouldn’t get the position, instead suggesting that he take on a lesser role on another committee.

One person familiar with the matter said Quarles’s candidacy seemed like a sure thing until this summer, when his odds fell to around 50 percent. Klaas Knot, the governor of the Dutch central bank, is Quarles’s chief rival for the FSB job.

But a White House official said the administration still believes that Quarles has support overseas, and that appointing an American to the position for the first time could strengthen the country’s ties with Europe.

“Randy Quarles is exceptionally qualified to chair the FSB. He would bring to the position strong leadership, decades of experience with financial regulation and a well-deserved reputation for working cooperatively,” said Lindsay Walters, a White House spokeswoman.

For his part, Quarles recently defended the FSB against some Republican criticism.

“The FSB does not impose obligations. It addresses problems — problems that are of great importance to the United States and which, because of the global nature of the financial system, we cannot address alone,” he said at a banking conference in Utah in June.

An FSB spokesman declined to comment, but its seven-member nominations committee will make a final decision this fall.

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