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Mexico poised for first woman central bank chief after president's U-turn

Kitco News

MEXICO CITY, Nov 24 (Reuters) - Mexico's president said on Wednesday he would propose a senior finance ministry official as the first woman to run the central bank after abandoning his previous pick.

Victoria Rodriguez, a deputy finance minister, was proposed by President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador after it emerged on Tuesday that he had decided to withdraw the initial nominee for the job, his former finance minister Arturo Herrera.

Markets appeared rattled by the news, with the peso falling by more than 2% against the dollar, performing significantly worse than other major currencies in Latin America.

"We always need to look for the best and we consider given the circumstances it's very important for it to be Victoria Rodriguez," Lopez Obrador told a regular news conference.

The president did not immediately explain why Herrera's candidacy had been withdrawn, but said women were a priority for his administration. Herrera has not commented yet either.

Rumors had circulated that Herrera's name would be withdrawn, but the news provoked surprise inside the government on Tuesday.

Rodriguez is due to replace outgoing governor Alejandro Diaz de Leon, whose term will conclude at the end of 2021. Her nomination must be ratified by the Mexican Senate, which should be a formality due to the government's comfortable majority.

Reporting by Dave Graham; Editing by Frank Jack Daniel and Bernadette Baum
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