Italy’s Springboard to Technocrat Stardom Goes to Signorini
(Bloomberg) -- The Bank of Italy has picked Luigi Federico Signorini as its choice for senior deputy governor, the second-highest ranked official and a job which has put previous holders on the path to higher office.
The post opened up when Prime Minister Mario Draghi made Daniele Franco Italy’s finance minister. Such is the stature of the central bank that its top echelon is often a port of call for governments seeking leading technocrats for major assignments.
Draghi himself was previously its governor, and went on to become European Central Bank president until 2019, before taking the job of Italian prime minister this year.
Signorini will need to be confirmed in the new role in a presidential decree. The 65-year-old is currently a deputy governor, a level he reached in 2013 after a career spent mostly at the central bank.
He has a degree in economics from the University of Florence, where he was at one point an assistant to Draghi, who was a professor there in the 1980s. He also studied economics at Harvard on a Bank of Italy scholarship.
In one of his brief spells outside the central bank, Signorini served as an adviser to former Premier Lamberto Dini, also a former-director general, during a technocratic government in the mid-1990s.
Among Signorini’s more recent roles at the Bank of Italy was a period in the banking and financial supervision area from 2008 to 2013, where he dealt with fallout from the financial crisis on the Italian banking system.
Of the past 11 people in his current post going back to 1959, seven went on to hold a leading political job, ranging from finance minister to president of the republic. Others who moved on to higher office elsewhere include Fabio Panetta, currently a member of the six-person Executive Board at the ECB.
Several have also become governors of the central bank. The current holder of that role, Ignazio Visco, is due to stay in the job until 2023.
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