The governor of the Bank of England may be on the verge of resigning from his role before the end of his term in 2018, sources claim.
Mark Carney confirmed he will announce his "personal" decision before the end of the year as to whether he will serve a full eight-year term or step down, after five years in the job, in 2018.
The Bank of England would not confirm or deny reports on Sunday 20 October that Carney may be heading towards a resignation, expected to be announced next week when he delivers his quarterly inflation report, according to the Financial Times.
The central bank will be forced to announce the UK economy has performed more strongly than expected in the wake of June's Brexit vote. However, a resignation would likely be seen as conceding that Carney made errors during his time as governor.
"To be clear, it's an entirely personal decision and no one should read anything into that decision in terms of government policy. It is a privilege for me to have this role," Carney told a parliamentary committee last week.
"Like everyone, I have personal circumstances that I have to manage. This role demands total attention and I intend to give it as long as I can."
However, the Canadian's premature departure could have a volatile effect on the already destabilised markets, leaving the pound vulnerable.
Now speculation is growing that Conservative MP Jacob Rees-Mogg could be lined up to replace him, according to Bloomberg.
"On every occasion, he wants to talk down the economy and find doom and gloom, which doesn't seem to me to be the job of the governor of the Bank of England," Mr Rees-Mogg said earlier this month."
"He never seems to want to recognise the result of the referendum and get on with it. It looks like he is a sore loser."
Tory MEP and Brexit supporter Daniel Hannan also criticised the governor for "politicising" his role.
"I am sorry to say this — he seems a nice enough fellow — but Mark Carney should indeed resign. He politicised his office inexcusably," he said.
However, Carney has received unwavering support from the Chancellor of the Exchequer, Philip Hammond, who has urged him to stay until the end of his term in 2021.
Both sides of the Brexit camp speculated over Carney's message delivered to the House of Lords last week.
Financial markets took it as a sign he would see out his term. However, Brexiteers felt that he was implying he would resign.
Last year, Carney suggested he would stay on until 2021, after originally saying that he would not serve his full eight-year term.