Prime Minister Liz Truss has vetoed the government's plans to appoint Antonia Romeo as Treasury permanent secretary.
Chancellor Kwasi Kwarteng announced Romeo, who is currently permanent secretary at the justice department, would fill the position last week. However, the FT has reported that government insiders have revealed Truss has overruled Kwarteng on the appointment.
The new permanent secretary was instead announced as James Bowler, who was previously permanent secretary to the Department for International Trade. Bowler was also previously permanent secretary to the Cabinet Office.
Romeo, who is seen as an "outsider", was the only candidate interviewed for the role who has not spent a large part of their career at the Treasury.
The move was widely seen as part of a broader attempt to calm financial markets, as Truss continues to deal with fallout from the reaction to the Mini Budget.
Kwarteng sacked the previous permanent secretary at the Treasury, Tom Scholar, on his first day as chancellor, arguing the department needed "fresh leadership".
Widely regarded as an established and respected civil servant, Scholar's departure further hurt market perceptions of Truss, which have viewed her as failing to respect institutional restraints on economic policymaking.
Meanwhile, Cat Little and Beth Russell were announced as second permanent secretaries, with Little being director general of public spending since 2020 and Russell working at the Treasury for over two decades, most recently as director general of tax and welfare.