By Suzanne Barlyn and Rama Venkat Raman

(Reuters) - The New York State on Wednesday confirmed Governor Andrew Cuomo's pick to become the state's top financial regulator.

The confirmation vote for Maria Vullo, Cuomo's nominee for superintendent of the New York State Department of Financial Services (NYDFS), was unanimous.

Cuomo, a Democrat, nominated Vullo in January. Her appointment is effective immediately. 

Earlier on Wednesday, the New York Senate Finance Committee held a hearing on Vullo's nomination and recommended that she be confirmed. Last week, the New York Senate's banking and insurance committees also held separate hearings about Vullo.

Vullo, a lawyer who represented banks, described herself during recent state legislative committee meetings as "pro-business and pro-consumer."

She has been running the NYDFS as its acting superintendent since February.

Vullo will succeed former NYDFS Superintendent Benjamin Lawsky, who left the agency last year.

Under Lawsky, NYDFS earned a reputation as an aggressive regulatory body that extracted hefty fines from global banks and other financial institutions.

The regulator, created in 2011 by consolidating the state's banking and insurance agencies, had been in flux since before Vullo's arrival in March.


(Reporting by Suzanne Barlyn in New York and Rama Venkat Raman in Bengaluru; Editing by Andrew Hay)