Kemal Dervis Is Favourite to Take Over at IMF

ImageTurkish politician and economist Kemal Derviş is the early frontrunner to replace Dominique Strauss-Kahn at the International Monetary Fund.

William Hill is offering odds of 5/2 on Derviş, the former Turkish finance minister, becoming the IMF’s next managing director. He is followed by Montek Singh Ahluwalia, deputy chairman of India’s Planning Commission, at 5/1.

Germany’s Axel Weber is third favourite at 7/1. Singapore’s Tharman Shanmugaratnam – who was promoted to deputy prime minister earlier on Wednesday – and former UK prime minister Gordon Brown are both available at 8/1.
Derviş had already been identified as a strong candidate to replace Strauss-Kahn, 62, who is currently in Rikers Island prison, New York, facing charges of sexual assault on a 32-year-old chambermaid. A former head of the United Nations Development Programme, Derviş leads the global economy programme at the Brookings Institution in Washington and is known to have strong connections with the IMF.

For Derviş, Ahluwalia or Shanmugaratnam to be appointed, though, Europe’s political elite would have to yield its traditional grip on the IMF. Each of its 10 managing directors has been European – and four hailed from France – thanks to a cosy transatlantic arrangement that means an American has usually run the World Bank.

But the events in New York in recent days may end this status quo.

Weber, the former head of the Bundesbank, is understood to be the favoured choice of German chancellor Angela Merkel. Under the weighted voting system used by the IMF, a candidate backed by European members and the US would be almost certain of success.
The pressure on Strauss-Kahn has intensified since US Treasury secretary Tim Geithner said the Frenchman he was unable to run the IMF from Rikers Island. He is due to appear in court on Friday, and denies committing a sexual assault at his Manhattan hotel last weekend. His five-year term at the IMF ends next year, but he had been expected to step down early to run for the French presidency.

William Hill’s odds in full (accurate on Wednesday afternoon):
5/2: Kemal Derviş
5/1: Montek Singh Ahluwalia
7/1: Axel Weber
8/1: Tharman Shanmugaratnam
8/1: Gordon Brown
10/1: John Lipsky
10/1: Mark Carney
12/1: Philipp Hildebrand
12/1: Peer Steinbruck
14/1: Christine Lagarde
16/1: Stanley Fischer
16/1: Changyong Rhee
16/1: Hyun Song Shin
20/1: Trevor Manuel
20/1: Mohamed El-Erian
25/1: Agustin Carstens

Source: Graeme Wearden,, Photograph: Tim Sloan/AFP/Getty Images
Last modified onSaturday, 06 May 2017 10:07