Sabine Lautenschläger

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Sabine Lautenschläger
Born (1964-06-03) 3 June 1964 (age 54)
Alma materUniversity of Bonn
OccupationCentral banker

Sabine Lautenschläger (born 3 June 1964) is a German jurist and central banker. She currently serves as a member of the executive board of the European Central Bank,[1] succeeding Jörg Asmussen,[2] and was formerly vice-president of the Deutsche Bundesbank.[3] Lautenschläger graduated with a Staatsexamen from the University of Bonn in 1990.[3]


Lautenschläger began her career in banking supervision in 1995 at the Federal Banking Supervisory Office, the predecessor to today’s Federal Financial Supervisory Authority (BaFin) and served as a member of the Basel Committee on Banking Supervision between 2008 and early 2014.[4]

Vice President of Bundesbank, 2011–2013[edit]

Lautenschläger was appointed as vice president of the Bundesbank in 2011,[4] the first woman to hold that position.[5] In that capacity, she was in charge of banking and financial supervision.[6] She also served as member of the Financial Stability Committee of the European System of Central Banks between 2012 and early 2014.

During her time at Bundesbank, Lautenschläger pushed for the ECB’s stress tests on bank assets to be tough and credible, while calling for the euro region’s prospective bank-resolution mechanism to have a strong legal basis.[4] She has been among those who have warned about potential conflicts of interest when the ECB has responsibility for both monetary policy and banking supervision, and has argued against treating government bonds as risk-free assets on banks' books.[7] She also warned of the risks of keeping interest rates too low for too long.[4]

In line with the Bundesbank board, Lautenschläger consistently opposed the ECB’s bond-buying plan, known as Outright Monetary Transactions (OMT).[8]

Member of the Executive Board of the ECB, 2014–present[edit]

Lautenschläger was nominated by the German government as a member of the Executive Board of the European Central Bank in December 2013.

At the time, Claudia Maria Buch and Elke König were cited by German media as contenders for the post.[9] The eurozone governments were under pressure from MEPs to appoint a woman to the board, which had been all-male after Austria’s Gertrude Tumpel-Gugerell left midway through 2011.[10] Unlike her predecessor Jörg Asmussen, Lautenschläger has no formal party affiliation.[10] Lautenschläger's nomination was welcomed by policymakers across the political spectrum.[11] Her candidacy was endorsed by the European Parliament Committee on Economic and Monetary Affairs on 13 January and by the full assembly on 16 January.[8] Early on, commentators noted that Lautenschläger’s regulatory experience could also make her an option for the deputy chair of the ECB’s Supervisory Board, which must be filled by an executive board member.[4][7][12]

Since her appointment as Vice-Chair of the Supervisory Board in February 2014, Lautenschläger has – alongside Chairwoman Danièle Nouy – also been responsible for the Single Supervisory Mechanism (SSM). She represents the SSM in the Basel Committee on Banking Supervision.[13]

In early September 2014, Danièle Nouy and Lautenschläger became mentioned in media ahead of the results of sweeping stress tests that probed the balance sheets of the eurozone’s largest lenders.[14]

By November 2014, Lautenschläger signaled she would oppose having the ECB purchase government bonds of eurozone countries unless there was a clear threat of persistent consumer price declines, thereby contradicting earlier message conveyed by ECB President Mario Draghi and his top deputy Vitor Constancio to bring inflation higher.[15] Alongside Bundesbank president Jens Weidmann, she later led the opposition in the Governing Council against the decision on 22 January 2015 to start large-scale bond-buying[16][17] amid concerns it removes pressure from euro-area countries to reform their economies and boost competitiveness.[18] By April 2015, she publicly called into question the effectiveness of the bond-buying program and also warned that low interest rates could lead to asset price bubbles.[19]

In November 2015, Lautenschläger again broke with normal etiquette to publicly criticise the bank's scheme of quantitative easing, saying that ever looser monetary policy had its limits and that money printing had yet to stabilize sinking price inflation, its formal goal.[20]

Other activities[edit]

Regulatory agencies[edit]

  • Financial Stability Board (FSB), Ex-Officio Member of the Standing Committee on Supervisory and Regulatory Cooperation (since 2015)

Non-profit organizations[edit]


  1. ^ Marsh, David, "Hollande’s setback signals wider European shifts", MarketWatch, March 31, 2014. Retrieved 2014-03-31.
  2. ^ "Regierung nominiert Lautenschläger für EZB". Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung. 17 December 2013.
  3. ^ a b CV at Archived 2013-10-22 at the Wayback Machine
  4. ^ a b c d e Jeff Black and Rainer Buergin (December 16, 2013), Lautenschlaeger Hailed as Possible Successor to Asmussen at ECB Bloomberg News.
  5. ^ Macroprudential Policy Conference, November 2014: Sabine Lautenschläger Swedish National Bank.
  6. ^ ECB board member European Voice, January 22, 2014.
  7. ^ a b Annika Breidthardt and Andreas Rinke (December 17, 2013), Germany proposes Bundesbank deputy for ECB board seat Reuters.
  8. ^ a b Jeff Black and Jonathan Stearns (January 14, 2014), ECB Candidate Lautenschlaeger Backs Euro Bank-Failure Authority Bloomberg News.
  9. ^ Rainer Buergin (February 24, 2014), Merkel Coalition Said to Pick Buch as Bundesbank Vice President Bloomberg News.
  10. ^ a b ECB nomination European Voice, December 18, 2013.
  11. ^ Ulrike Herrmann (December 16, 2013), Karriere in Europas Zentralbank Die Tageszeitung.
  12. ^ Tom Körkemeier and Eva Taylor (January 13, 2014), German ECB candidate strikes hawkish tone Reuters.
  13. ^ German Banking Congress 2014: Sabine Lautenschläger Association of German Banks (BdB).
  14. ^ Alice Ross (September 16, 2014), Lenders hit at ECB over secrecy agreements Financial Times.
  15. ^ Brian Blackstone (November 29, 2014), ECB’s Lautenschlaeger Opposes Government Bond Purchases Wall Street Journal.
  16. ^ Jana Randow, Alessandro Speciale and Simon Kennedy (January 26, 2015), Draghi Plays Chess in Economy Class After Journey to QE Bloomberg Business.
  17. ^ Jennifer Ryan and Stephanie Bodoni (January 29, 2015), ECB’s Praet Sees Euro-Area Credit Improving as Stimulus Kicks In Bloomberg Business.
  18. ^ Brian Parkin and Stefan Riecher (January 24, 2015), ECB’s Draghi Seeks Real Economic Union to Lead Euro-Area Reforms Bloomberg Business.
  19. ^ Maria Sheahan (April 2, 2015), ECB's Lautenschlaeger casts doubts on QE's effectiveness - Wirtschafts Woche Reuters.
  20. ^ John O'Donnell (November 23, 2015), German ECB policy-setter breaks ranks with Draghi over QE Reuters.

External links[edit]