News / Economy

US Senate Confirms Yellen as Fed Chief

US Senate OKs Yellen as Fed Chiefi
X
January 06, 2014 11:27 PM
The U.S. Senate has confirmed Janet Yellen as the new head of the U.S. Federal Reserve, making her the first woman to head the central bank for the world's largest economy. She replaces Ben Bernanke who is leaving the post at the end of the month. VOA's Katherine Gypson reports.
Related video report by Katherine Gypson
The U.S. Senate has confirmed Janet Yellen as the new head of the U.S. Federal Reserve, making her the first woman to head the central bank for the world's largest economy.  She replaces Ben Bernanke who is leaving the post at the end of the month. 


Who is Janet Yellen? 
 
  • Vice Chair of the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System since 2010

  • Served as President and CEO of the 12th District Federal Reserve Bank, San Francisco

  • Professor Emeritus at the University of California at Berkeley

  • Member of Council on Foreign Relations and American Academy of Arts and Sciences

  • Received Ph.D. in Economics from Yale University in 1971
Economists are predicting that economics professor and Federal Reserve vice chair Janet Yellen will continue many of Ben Bernanke's efforts to boost the economy.  Both have called for a gradual end of the central bank’s multibillion-dollar program to keep interest rates low and stimulate the economy.

President Obama says Yellen is tough and effective.

“She sounded the alarm early about the housing bubble, about excesses in the financial sector and about the risks of a major recession.  She doesn’t have a crystal ball, but what she does have is a keen understanding of how markets and the economy work - not just in theory but in the real world," said President Obama.

Yellen has written extensively about the causes and impact of unemployment, and some analysts say she may put even more emphasis on creating jobs.

"Too many Americans still cannot find a job and worry how they'll pay their bills and provide for their families," said Yellen.
 
Unemployment hit 10 percent during the recession, and has now fallen to 7 percent, but that number is still above its historic average.

Economists say Yellen will likely continue Bernanke's policies of holding short-term interest rates close to zero by using the Fed's massive program of buying securities.

The U.S. central bank has been buying $85 billion in securities every month, to pump more money into the economy and make it easier for businesses and individuals to borrow. But economists say that stimulus must end eventually, to avoid sparking inflation that could damage the economy.  

“I believe that supporting the recovery today is the surest path to returning to a more normal approach to monetary policy," said Yellen.
 
Yellen once headed the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco. Former president Bill Clinton named her head of his Council of Economic Advisers in 1997. The 67-year-old economist is professor emeritus of the University of California at Berkeley, where she has been on the faculty for decades.

You May Like

How to Safeguard Your Mobile Privacy

As the digital world becomes more mobile, so too do concerns about eroding privacy and increased hacking More

'Desert Dancer' Chronicles Iranian Underground Dance Troupe

Film by Richard Raymond is based on true story of Afshin Ghaffarian and his friends More

Obesity Poses Complex Problem

Professor warns of obesity’s worldwide health impact More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Rolling Thunder Run Reveals Changed Attitudes Towards Vietnam Wari
X
Katherine Gypson
May 25, 2015 1:32 AM
For many US war veterans, the Memorial Day holiday is an opportunity to look back at a divisive conflict in the nation’s history and to remember those who did not make it home.
Video

Video Rolling Thunder Run Reveals Changed Attitudes Towards Vietnam War

For many US war veterans, the Memorial Day holiday is an opportunity to look back at a divisive conflict in the nation’s history and to remember those who did not make it home.
Video

Video Female American Soldiers: Healing Through Filmmaking

According to the United States Defense Department, there are more than 200-thousand women serving in the U.S. Armed Forces.  Like their male counterparts, females have experiences that can be very traumatic.  VOA's Bernard Shusman tells us about a program that is helping some American women in the military heal through filmmaking.
Video

Video Iowa Family's Sacrifice Shaped US Military Service for Generations

Few places in America have experienced war like Waterloo. This small town in the Midwest state of Iowa became famous during World War II not for what it accomplished, but what it lost. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, the legacy of one family’s sacrifice is still a reminder today of the real cost of war for all families on the homefront.
Video

Video On Film: How Dance Defies Iran's Political Oppression

'Desert Dancer' by filmmaker Richard Raymond is based on the true story of a group of young Iranians, who form an underground dance troupe in the Islamic Republic of Iran. This is the latest in a genre of films that focus on dance as a form of freedom of expression against political oppression and social injustice. VOA’s Penelope Poulou has more.
Video

Video Turkey's Ruling Party Trying to Lure Voters in Opposition Stronghold

Turkey’s AK (Justice and Development) Party is seeking a fourth successive general election victory, with the goal of securing two-thirds of the seats in Parliament to rewrite the constitution and change the country's parliamentary system into a presidential one. To achieve that, the party will need to win seats in opposition strongholds like the western city of Izmir. Dorian Jones reports.
Video

Video Millions Flock to Ethiopia Polls

Millions of Ethiopians cast their votes Sunday in the first national election since the 2012 death of longtime leader Meles Zenawi. Mr. Meles' party, the Ethiopian People's Revolutionary Democratic Front, is almost certain of victory again. VOA's Anita Powell reports from Addis Ababa.
Video

Video Scientists Testing Space Propulsion by Light

Can the sun - the heart of our solar system - power a spacecraft to the edge of our solar system? The answer may come from a just-launched small satellite designed to test the efficiency of solar sail propulsion. Once deployed, its large sail will catch the so-called solar wind and slowly reach what scientists hope to be substantial speed. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video FIFA Trains Somali Referees

As stability returns to the once lawless nation of Somalia, the world football governing body, FIFA, is helping to rebuild the country’s sport sector by training referees as well as its young footballers. Abdulaziz Billow has more from Mogadishu.
Video

Video With US Child Obesity Rates on the Rise, Program Promotes Health Eating

In its fifth year, FoodCorps puts more than 180 young Americans into 500 schools across the United States, where they focus on teaching students about nutrition, engaging them with hands-on activities, and improving their access to healthy foods whether in the cafeteria or the greater community. Aru Pande has more.
Video

Video Virginia Neighborhood Draws People to Nostalgic Main Street

In the U.S., people used to grow up in small towns with a main street lined by family-owned shops and restaurants. Today, however, many main streets are worn down and empty because shoppers have been lured away by shopping malls. But in the Del Ray neighborhood of Alexandria, Virginia, main street is thriving. VOA’s Deborah Block reports it has a nostalgic feel with its small restaurants and unique stores.

VOA Blogs

World Currencies

EUR
USD
0.9109
JPY
USD
121.50
GBP
USD
0.6467
CAD
USD
1.2293
INR
USD
63.559

Rates may not be current.