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Lagarde Resigns From IMF As Nomination To Head ECB Proceeds

IMF Managing Director Christine Lagarde addresses the Paris Forum at the Economy Ministry in Paris on May 7.

Christine Lagarde has submitted her resignation as chief of the International Monetary Fund (IMF), an expected move after she was nominated to be the next president of the European Central Bank (ECB).

Lagarde, who has been head of the IMF since 2011, said on July 16 that her resignation will take effect on September 12.

"With greater clarity now on the process for my nomination as ECB president and the time it will take, I have made this decision in the best interest of the fund, as it will expedite the selection process for my successor," Lagarde said.

Lagarde's ECB nomination must still be approved by the European Parliament, a move expected but not certain within the fractious body. If approved, she would take over from Mario Draghi on October 31 for one eight-year term.

The ECB, based in Frankfurt, governs monetary policy for the 19 countries using the euro single currency and sets benchmark interest rates.

Her IMF resignation will allow the board to officially begin the search for a replacement. Her term was not scheduled to end until July 2021.

By agreement, a European traditionally leads the IMF, while an American heads the World Bank.

Based on reporting by Reuters and AFP