Italian Lorenzo Bini Smaghi is ready to leave his position on the European Central Bank's executive board but wants first to know where he could be placed, a source close to the French president's office said on Wednesday.

The problem for Lorenzo Bini Smaghi is not to know whether he wants to leave or not, the question he is asking himself is to know where he will end up, the source said.

(Reporting by Emmanuel Jarry; editing by Patrick Graham)