NYU Professor Viral Acharya becomes RBI's new Deputy Governor
Viral Acharya, an economics professor at the New York University's Stern School of Business was appointed as the Reserve Bank of India's deputy governor on Wednesday. He is set to begin on 20th January, 2017. Acharya's resume runs 22 pages long; his hobbies include tennis, running, chess, traveling, poetry, singing and composing Indian semi-classical music. Tap in to learn more about the deputy governor.
At 42 years old and a three-year tenure, Viral Acharya is the youngest deputy governor to be appointed by the RBI post-liberalization.
About Viral Acharya
Viral Acharya grew up in South Mumbai in a family full of medical practitioners. He attended college in the year 1991, memorable for the then Finance-Minister Manmohan Singh's budget speech. Acharya stood fifth in the joint entrance exam of the Indian Institute of Technology, Bombay and graduated in computer science. He received a PhD in finance at NYU's Stern School of Business in 2001.
Viral Acharya and Raghuram Rajan
Viral Acharya and former RBI governor Raghuram Rajan have shared close association. Together, they have authored half a dozen papers including one on "Sovereign Debt, Government Myopia and the Financial Sector" in 2013. They both have been strong advocates of the independence of central banks, favouring them to be "democratically accountable, yet be operational independent from political influence."
Acharya and Rajan's common ground
Viral Acharya and Raghuram Rajan both have come from academic backgrounds. They're both alumni of the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) and both are Computer Science and Engineering graduates. Both of them switched to finance and economics later and also share passion when it comes to cricket. Raghuram Rajan is mentioned as a reference in Viral Acharya's resume.
Idolizing Raghuram Rajan
Acharya was once asked by a co-passenger on a flight whether he was 'Raghu Rajan' as his notes contained the words 'crisis' and 'banks'. On recalling the incident, he said, "That was the day when I realized if I have Raghu as my role model and I hit 5% or 10% of that, I can easily pass off as a poor man's Raghu Rajan."
Viral Acharya's specializations
According to Viral Acharya's profile on the New York University website, he is known for his research in theoretical and empirical analysis of systemic risks of the financial sector, its regulation and genesis in government-induced distortions. His research areas also cover credit and liquidity risks, agency-theoretic foundations as well as their general equilibrium consequences.
On his appointment
Viral Acharya said, "I am honoured to be given the chance to join the Reserve Bank of India as deputy governor and I look forward to the opportunity. Beyond that it is premature to say anything."