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Rachel Reeves: Who is the UK’s new chancellor?

After graduating, she took on a role as an economist at the Bank of England.

She worked on the central bank’s Japan desk, looking at the country’s attempts to come out of stagnation in the 1990s.

During a secondment to the UK’s embassy in Washington DC, she met her future husband Nicholas Joicey, who had spent time as a film critic for newspapers and as a speechwriter to then-Chancellor Gordon Brown.

The path to Parliament was not clear for Reeves though. There were two failed campaigns for the former seat of Bromley and Chislehurst, typically a safe one for the Conservatives.

Before becoming an MP for Leeds West in 2010, she moved to Leeds and spent time working at the Halifax Bank of Scotland.

On entering Parliament, she rose quickly up the ranks.

She was awarded a number of key shadow roles and, according to political columnist Rachel Sylvester, was “seen from the start as someone to be promoted”.

One colleague said that she “chews through calls and briefings”, before adding, “I have never, ever, ever, seen her unprepared.”

Last December, Reeves spoke at the funeral of Alistair Darling, the former chancellor who served as a mentor when she was starting out. She spoke fondly of having lasagne and red wine with him and his wife, and of his counsel – he found himself in charge during a massive crisis when families and the country were having a hard time making ends meet.

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