The Federal Reserve Bank of New York President, Timothy Geithner, will be Barack Obama‘s new Treasury Secretary, writes the Wall Street Journal, a decision that has “mystified” some Democrats.

“An intense, wiry man with a boyish face and sly humor, Mr. Geithner, now 47, has had a hand in responding to financial crises for nearly 15 years — first at the Treasury, and then at the Fed. Along with Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke and Fed Vice Chairman Donald Kohn, he has been one of the Fed’s three key decision makers.

“Mr. Geithner, whose father worked for the U.S. government and the Ford Foundation, was raised in the U.S., Asia and Africa. After college, he worked for Henry Kissinger’s consulting firm, then joined the Treasury Department in 1988. He was a key international aide to Treasury Secretary Robert Rubin, then to his successor, Lawrence Summers — Mr. Geithner’s chief rival to become Mr. Obama’s Treasury secretary — and played a role in bailouts of Mexico, Indonesia and South Korea, and also in the decision to allow Russia to default on its debts in 1998.”

Read the full story here.

Peter Fray

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