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Lagarde to Succeed Draghi as ECB Chief as Economy Weakens


Christine Lagarde is set to swap the helm of the International Monetary Fund for that of the European Central Bank, becoming the first woman to run euro-area monetary policy just as the bloc's economy looks in need of fresh stimulus.


Lagarde was nominated to succeed Mario Draghi as president of the ECB when his eight-year term ends on Oct. 31. European leaders turned to the 63-year old onetime lawyer and former French finance minister on Tuesday after hours of horse-trading in Brussels over a package of top EU jobs which included handing the presidency of the European Commission to German Defense Minister Ursula von der Leyen.

In a statement, Lagarde said that she was "honored to have been nominated" and would temporarily relinquish her responsibilities at the IMF while EU lawmakers look to ratify her appointment.

"She was chosen because she took on an indisputable leadership role at the IMF and I think whoever can do that can also lead the ECB," German Chancellor Angela Merkel said. French President Emmanuel Macron said "she has the qualities and competence for the ECB. She has credibility with the markets."