Geither at Treasury, Richardson at Commerce

It appears that Barack Obama’s economic team is set, with Timothy Geithner at Treasury and Bill Richardson at Commerce.

President-elect Barack Obama has selected Timothy Geithner as Treasury secretary, charging the respected head of the New York Federal Reserve with pulling the United States out of an economic nosedive, NBC news reported on Friday. Geithner, 47, had been seen as one of two main candidates for the job along with former Clinton administration Treasury chief Lawrence Summers.

U.S. stocks soared on the news, pushing major indices up more than 6 percent. The Dow Jones industrial average closed above 8,000, an important psychological trading level.

“A fantastic choice to help lead the financial markets out of the wilderness,” said Chris Rupkey, senior economist at The Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi in New York, of Geithner. “A crisis manager par excellence who will hit the ground running as he has been on the case since the global funding crisis began way back in July 2007.”

That the stock market can jump six percentage points on the announcement of a political appointee is worrisome on a variety of levels. But there you go.

Barely rating a mention:

NBC also reported that New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson — who was one of a crowded pack of Democratic presidential early this year — could receive Obama’s nod to become commerce secretary. Richardson’s elevation to the cabinet would give the Obama administration its first high-profile Hispanic member as its main liaison to the business community. Richardson was a United Nations ambassador and energy secretary under former President Bill Clinton.

While discussions of tokenism are inevitable, I suppose, it seems odd in the case of Richardson. He’s superbly qualified. If anything, Commerce is something of a demotion for him.

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James Joyner
About James Joyner
James Joyner is Professor and Department Head of Security Studies at Marine Corps University's Command and Staff College and a nonresident senior fellow at the Scowcroft Center for Strategy and Security at the Atlantic Council. He's a former Army officer and Desert Storm vet. Views expressed here are his own. Follow James on Twitter @DrJJoyner.

Comments

  1. Triumph says:

    Great. We have a yankee as Treasury secretary–I’m sure he’ll be palling around with Gordon Brown. And we have a Mexican at Commerce. I can see the waves of his countrymen already reaching over the Rio Grande like a Tsunami to destroy our economy.

    Great–esta la tiempo para practicar nos espanol porque en la futura no estaba Americanos con sangre roja y el medio de Dio.

  2. G.A.Phillips says:

    Great–esta la tiempo para practicar nos espanol porque en la futura no estaba Americanos con sangre roja y el medio de Dio.

    SPEAK ENGLISH, NO HALIBUT ESPAGNOLA! but I do speak a bit of donnkanese.

  3. Mithras says:

    That the stock market can jump six percentage points on the announcement of a political appointee is worrisome on a variety of levels.

    Don’t worry. Monday it’ll tank again and it even out.

    In the meantime, um, who let the Klan in?

  4. sam says:

    In the meantime, um, who let the Klan in?

    It’s only Triumph, the Insult Dawg, doin’ his thing. Not to worry.

  5. tom p says:

    Triumph: my Spanish GF says you need to go back to school if you are going to post in Spanish… (I tried to work it out with my pidgin Mexican but couldn’t make it work out, she looked at it and said, “HuuuuuHHHHH??????”)

    Give it up, bro…

    That the stock market can jump six percentage points on the announcement of a political appointee is worrisome on a variety of levels. But there you go.

    James, it is only worrisome if you think it really makes a difference. The people on top always make out… they only need to know which way the wind blows.

    While discussions of tokenism are inevitable, I suppose, it seems odd in the case of Richardson. He’s superbly qualified. If anything, Commerce is something of a demotion for him.

    I really thought he would be the top choice for SoS. Oh well, I have gotten used to being wrong.