JERUSALEM -- A person familiar with the thinking of Israel's central bank chief, Stanley Fischer, says the economist is interested in the top job at the International Monetary Fund.

The person says Fischer has received a number of phone calls from colleagues around the world encouraging him to apply. Although Fischer hasn't made a final decision, the person said Sunday "if the opportunity comes along, he will take it."

He spoke on condition of anonymity because Fischer is still weighing his options.

The job has traditionally been reserved for a European, making Fischer something of a long shot.

But Fischer, who was born in Africa and spent his professional life in America, is a former No. 2 official at the IMF and has a strong knowledge of its workings.