Born in Catania on 28 February 1956, married with two children. In 1978 he was awarded a degree in Law with honours from the University of Catania; in 1979 he completed a post-graduate course in Regional Economics and collaborated with the chairs of Private Law and Industrial Law. He is a qualified auditor.
In 1980 he joined the Bank of Italy and was appointed to the Supervision Office of the Genoa branch. After performing his military service as an officer in the Finance Police, in 1983 he was transferred to the Milan branch, where he worked in the Economic Research Unit and the Supervision Office, focusing on the real economy of Lombardy and the analysis of banks of national interest (Banca Commerciale Italiana and Credito Italiano) and investment funds.
From 1985 onwards he worked in the Supervision Inspectorate at the Bank of Italy's Head Office. In this period he was responsible for organizing training courses and participated in numerous working groups. Among other matters he was concerned with impaired and restructured loans and contributed to the drafting of the 1993 Consolidated Law on Banking. He was also a member of various selection committees for the Bank of Italy's hiring of young graduates.
As a supervision inspector he was responsible for several on-site examinations at banks and financial intermediaries, in Italy and abroad. Among other matters he was concerned with the validation of advanced risk-measurement models provided for by the Basel Accord. He oversaw the preparation of the current version of the Guide to Supervisory Activities.
In January 2009 he was appointed Deputy Head of the Supervision Inspectorate and in May 2011 he was made its head. In February 2013 he was appointed Managing Director for Banking and Financial Supervision.
From 27 January 2014 to 30 June 2019 he was Director General for Financial Supervision and Regulation.
As of 1 July 2019 he is Managing Director responsible for high-level consultancy to the Governing Board on matters of financial supervision and regulation and for relations with the Single Supervisory Mechanism (SSM).
He has written numerous articles on banking and financial subjects, with special reference to questions regarding financial innovation and the supervision of derivative instruments.