What are the political connections of the next Governor of the Bank of England?

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Mark Carney
The next Governor of the Bank of England Mark Carney. Photo: Reuters/Chris Wattie

There is a small flurry of interest building over the political connections of the next Governor of the Bank of England, Mark Carney.

When his appointment was announced he was universally lauded for his sharp brain and achievements in keeping Canada well out of the worst of the credit crunch.

It was no secret either that he had potential political ambitions in Canada, his home country, even touted as a possible leader of the Liberals one day.

But over the weekend, Canadian newspapers started to look more carefully at how seriously he was courted as a potential candidate over the summer.

The Bank of Canada has denied absolutely that there is any impropriety in the revelations about his holiday, courtesy of a prominent opposition finance spokesman, the equivalent of the Shadow Chancellor there.

And there is no suggestion that his decision making has been influenced by politics. But the story may need some fuller answers than he has so far been willing to give.

His apparent political proximity to one side of the debate may prove to take some of the sheen off his superstar status. And they may give British MPs, in their inquiring fashion, more questions to ask when he appears in front of them in the New Year.

At the very least, the story may be a foretaste of the kind of more aggressive scrutiny Carney will face when he moves across the Atlantic.

Eyebrows would certainly be raised if an independent Bank of England Governor was to take holidays with a front bench politician of any stripe.

Mr Carney may be advised to clear up any doubts before anyone here or in Canada has cause to doubt him. The Chancellor, who said he was the "best man in the world" for the job may hope so too.