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Rodrigo de Rato makes Lazard Ltd his new business

Former International Monetary Fund head Rodrigo de Rato became senior managing director of Lazard Ltd.

Rato, 58, was managing director of the IMF from June 2004 through October 2007. He announced his resignation from the IMF in June for personal reasons.

Before joining the IMF, he was vice president for economic affairs and Minister of Economy in Spain. He has also served on the boards of the World Bank and European Bank for Reconstruction and Development.

Rato, who will be based in Madrid and London, will report directly to Lazard Chairman and Chief Executive Bruce Wasserstein. He will focus on strategy for the investment bank.

"Mr. Rato brings an abundance of economic knowledge and relationships in both the private and public sectors due to his rich history of high profile finance positions," Wasserstein said in a statement.

During his three-year tenure at the IMF, de Rato strongly advocated reform, including a reshuffling of voting shares to give fast-growing developing countries more clout. He sought to monitoring of the global economy at a time when global financial markets have replaced the IMF as main lender to many developing countries.

The IMF chose France's Dominique Strauss-Kahn as its new leader in September.

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