Argentina’s President-Elect Names Former Finance Minister as Economy Minister

         

Javier Milei, Argentina’s president-elect, has appointed Luis Caputo, a former finance minister and Central Bank chief, as the Economy Minister, signaling a move towards orthodox economic management.

Background and Announcement

Javier Milei, Argentina’s President-elect, has revealed his selection of Luis Caputo, a former finance minister and Central Bank chief, to head the Economy Ministry upon taking office on Dec. 10. This decision signifies a shift towards conventional economic strategies as the country grapples with skyrocketing inflation at an annual rate of 143%.

Caputo’s Previous Role and Milei’s Plans

As former finance minister in the government of conservative President Mauricio Macri, Caputo oversaw a debt restructuring before serving as Central Bank chief. Milei, a libertarian figure, has expressed his desire to eliminate the Central Bank. He has emphasized the importance of dismantling the Central Bank’s short-term loans, known as ‘Leliqs’, and ending exchange rate controls, identifying Caputo as the ideal person to resolve these issues.

Market Response and Timing of Announcement

Milei’s decision to appoint Caputo has been positively received by the market, as evidenced by the rise in Argentine stocks and bonds, along with a slight appreciation of the peso. Milei had initially planned to delay announcing the economy minister to avoid associating any economic challenges with his choice before officially assuming office, but ultimately opted to disclose Caputo’s appointment.

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