HSBC chairman Stephen Green is quitting to join the government as trade minister, according to BBC business editor Robert Peston.
The appointment is expected to be announced by Number 10 this afternoon and is the last post still outstanding in the Government.
Number 10 has declined to comment on what it called “speculation”.
It had been reported that prominent business grandees had refused to take the job on and that the previous trade minister, Standard Chartered Bank chairman Lord Davies had declined an offer from Prime Minister David Cameron to stay in the post.
In August, Lord Britten was taken on as the coalition’s trade adviser for six months while a minister was found.