Senate Confirms Yellen as Next Fed Chief (Jan. 7, 2014)
The U.S. Senate on Monday confirmed Janet Yellen as chairman of the Federal Reserve, succeeding Ben Bernanke, whose term expires Jan. 31, after eight years in that post. Yellen, 67, a noted economist who is currently second in command at the Fed, is the first woman to run the Fed in its 100-year history and one of only a handful of women leading central banks around the world. She previously served for six years as head of the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco until her 2010 appointment as vice chairman of the Fed.
Eleven Republican senators crossed the aisle to vote for Yellen, joining 45 Democrats to confirm her appointment with a final vote of 56-26. President Obama on Oct. 9, 2013, nominated Yellen for the post, citing her experience, leadership and record over the past three years as the Fed’s vice chairman.
When Yellen takes office Feb. 1, she becomes the first Democratic nominee to run the Fed since Paul Volcker was named chairman in 1979 under Jimmy Carter. She also served as chair of the Council of Economic Advisers under Bill Clinton. Observers expect Yellen, noted for her wide-ranging research and ability to build consensus, to continue the Fed’s focus on appropriate monetary policy strategy and methodical implementation of new elements of the Dodd-Frank Act. Challenges she faces include coping with a slowly improving economy and dragging unemployment numbers. Observers say Obama is considering nominating former Bank of Israel chief Stanley Fischer as the Fed’s new vice chairman.