Who Will Take Over From Strauss-Kahn?

The International Monetary Fund board met informally on Monday for an update on Dominique Strauss-Kahn but made no decision on whether to remove him from his job.

Dominique Strauss-Kahn in court.
Dominique Strauss-Kahn in court.

Unless the charges against him are dropped or proven untrue soon, they may have no choice but to act. And then the merry go round begins.

Who takes over? John Lipsky is currently acting managing directorbut he announced last week he was stepping down when his term expires in August, so he's out.

Emerging market countries would like to propose their candidate but it's hard to so see India or China ever agreeing on the same candidate and an independent gaining the necessary weight of political support.

Kermal Dervis of Turkey has been touted, but has anyone who believes that really thought through the implications of a Turk lecturing the Greeks on debt and austerity?

Equally does the US want a Mexican?

Trevor Manuel from South Africa has been tipped but at the end of the day the biggest job on the IMF's hands is currently Europe and the Europeans are going to make sure it's one of their own that helps sort it.

So which candidate to get behind ? The leading Germans might be Deutsche Bank CEO Joseph Ackermann and former Bundesbank head Axel Weber.

Ackermann has a contract as CEO that runs until 2013, that may not be insurmountable but the fact that Deutsche's net exposure to Greece was 1.6 billion euros at the end of 2010 might be.

Weber is discounted on the basis that he didn't become head of the European Central Bank because he couldn't support bailouts, hardly the right man to head the IMF !

So that leaves us with last man standing or in this case last woman, Christine Lagarde the French Finance Minister, the bookies favorite who's also popular in Washington.