01/03/2012 10:40 EST | Updated 03/04/2012 05:12 EST

ECB official Praet to take over from Juergen Stark as ECB economics chief

FRANKFURT - European Central Bank official Peter Praet has been named chief of economics in a reshuffle of top responsibilities at the bank.

The 62-year-old Belgian takes over the responsibilities of Juergen Stark, who resigned.

Praet has served on the six-member ECB executive board since June. His responsibilities have included human resources, budget and payment systems.

There had been speculation that responsibility for the ECB's economics department would fall to new board member Joerg Asmussen, who was named after Stark quit, or Benoit Coeure. Both joined the bank's leadership on Jan. 1.