French economist and best-selling author Thomas Piketty is to join the team of left-wing candidate Benoit Hamon in the run-up to France’s presidential election. An organisation chart displaying his name was unveiled on Saturday as Hamon inaugurated his campaign headquarters in central Paris. Piketty will advise Hamon on subjects relating to the “European budget treaty”, the chart showed, without giving further details. Campaign officials were not immediately available to comment on his role. A professor with the London School of Economics, Piketty is the author of best-selling book “Capital in the Twenty-First Century”, which depicts wealth concentrations and distribution over the past 250 years.
France’s Socialists picked Hamon as their candidate for president on Jan. 29, edging out former prime minister Manuel Valls. Latest polls show centrist and former economy minister Emmanuel Macron winning the election.
A Ifop rolling poll published on Friday showed far-right Front National leader Marine Le Pen getting 26 percent of votes in the first round on April 23, followed by Macron with 20.5 percent of votes and conservative Francois Fillon with 17.5 percent. Hamon is seen coming fourth with 15 percent.