Mario Draghi, the new head of Italys central bank, has been received by the country's president Carlo Azeglio Ciampi. It is not yet certain when he will take up his duties at the bank but it is expected to be in February, probably after other changes have been made to the banks governing board. An Italian economist of high standing and head of Goldman Sachs Europe, Draghi was nominated as the successor to Antonio Fazio as governor of the Banca dItalia by the banks governing board and then confirmed by the government. Draghis political neutrality seems to have counted for as much as his lengthy experience and extensive knowledge of Italian finance and government. His appointment was applauded widely by politicians and market watchers alike who believe it is the first step to restoring the Banks tarnished image; European Central Bank governor Jean-Claude Trichet, former Italian prime minister, Lamberto Dini and opposition leader Romano Prodi all welcomed the news. The most prominent voice raised against the selection, however, was Fazios. He claims the choice of an outside man will rankle with Banca dItalia staff who would have preferred an insider like former director-general and temporary governor Vincenzo Desario, who is now expected to step down.
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