Feb 7, 2023
Kishida Indicates Not Wanting to Surprise Market With BOJ Choice
(Bloomberg) -- Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida said that he will carefully consider the market impact while choosing a new Bank of Japan governor, indicating little intention to signal an immediate shift at the bank with a surprise decision.
“I’m considering the selection by paying close attention to the potential impact on financial markets,” Kishida said in response to questions in parliament Wednesday. “This is related to the fundamental direction of economic policy, and it’s getting a lot of attention from the financial and business worlds.”
The remarks are likely to boost market speculation that he is leaning toward either Deputy Governor Masayoshi Amamiya or his predecessor Hiroshi Nakaso for his final choice. The two have consistently been at the top of polls for who may replace Haruhiko Kuroda.
Kishida is reportedly planning to reveal his pick next week, nominating someone new to the top of the BOJ for the first time in a decade.
“Since the financial crisis, close coordination with other major central banks, and a high ability to understand and communicate with market participants at home and abroad has become critically important,” Kishida said. “I will make my choice while considering these points.”
Kishida’s approval ratings have been hovering around a record low, likely giving him little appetite to risk shocking and jolting global financial markets.
A local media outlet reported earlier this week that Amamiya has been approached by the government for the job. But that report was followed by a series of denials by government officials as they said the selection isn’t over yet.
Amamiya has been a favorite to succeed Kuroda, with polls showing him as the lead candidate for months.
As the second favorite, Nakaso is known for his international flair, strong network among central bankers abroad and his key role in responding to financial crises in the past.
--With assistance from Takashi Hirokawa.
©2023 Bloomberg L.P.