Saturday, January 7, 2017

The Debate Over IMF Director Christine Lagarde

With the news in December that IMF Director Lagarde was found guilty of negligence but would not receive any actual punishment, the IMF Board quickly issued a statement of support for Ms. Lagarde. This was mostly viewed favorably around the world, however there are some dissenters. 

Below are a couple of articles (one pro Lagarde and one con) that illustrate the debate over how effective she can now be at the IMF. This could be an important issue if another global financial crisis were to erupt and the IMF role in that crisis moved to center stage.


"As managing director for the past five years, Lagarde has been a ubiquitous presence on the world stage. Her aura of confidence and competence has provided a reassuring calm amidst global crises and economic uncertainty."

. . . .   

"Lagarde has inspired the confidence and trust of countries around the world and for good reason. Her continuing leadership will benefit everyone."

"What exactly do you need to do to get fired as managing director of the International Monetary Fund?

Turn the Greek economy into a wasteland? Nope. Dangerously politicize the body by taking sides in a referendum? Nope, not that either. A conviction for financial negligence? That seems to be just fine.
Short of sexual assault, there seems to be just about nothing that will get you removed from office at the IMF.
This week, IMF Managing Director Christine Lagarde was found guilty of negligence during her time as finance minister of France under then-President Nicolas Sarkozy. The result? Absolutely nothing. The court chose not to punish her, and the board of the IMF decided that she could remain in office.
And yet that is surely a decision the Fund will come to regret."      . . . .

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