Lagarde quits IMF on way to ECB

Business | Reuters 18 Jul 2019

International Monetary Fund chief Christine Lagarde submitted her resignation from the global crisis lender on Tuesday, citing more clarity about her nomination to lead the European Central Bank as European legislators approved a new top bureaucrat.

Lagarde said in a statement her resignation was effective September 12, firing the starting gun for the IMF's search for her successor, which is likely to be another European.

IMF succession is expected to be a major topic of discussion among G7 finance ministers and central bank governors meeting who started their two-day meeting yesterday.

Consumers prices in the eurozone increased by slightly more than initially forecast in June, data showed yesterday, although headline and underlying inflation rates were still below the improvement that policymakers are seeking.

EU statistics agency Eurostat said prices in the 19-country eurozone were 1.3 percent higher year-on-year in June, compared with a flash estimate of 1.2 percent. Inflation in May was 1.2 percent, the lowest rate since April 2018.

The European Central Bank, whose monetary policy committee meets next week, targets a rate of close to but below 2 percent.

Elsewhere, house prices in London fell at the fastest pace in almost 10 years in May, according to official data that also showed inflation hitting the Bank of England's 2 percent target for a second month running in June.

House prices in London slid by 4.4 percent in annual terms, the Office for National Statistics said.

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