January 26, 2010 |
Federal Reserve Chairman Ben S. Bernanke's confirmation to a second four-year term, seemingly a slam dunk just a few weeks ago, now has become a true battle royal. Although Democratic Sens. Dianne Feinstein of California and Max Baucus of Montana voiced support for Bernanke on Monday, a Wall Street Journal tally showed that the Fed chief still was 20 votes shy of the 60 needed to overcome a filibuster that could block his confirmation. A total of 43 senators have said they are undecided or haven't officially commented.
January 24, 2010 |
Federal Reserve Chairman Ben S. Bernanke, whose reconfirmation has become surprisingly jeopardized, received a bipartisan boost Saturday from two key senators who reiterated their support for him and predicted he would win a second four-year term. Senate banking committee Chairman Christopher J. Dodd (D-Conn.) and Sen. Judd Gregg (R-N.H.), who also serves on the committee, took the unusual step of issuing a weekend statement on Bernanke's behalf. The move came a day after two Democratic senators, Barbara Boxer of California and Russell D. Feingold of Wisconsin, announced their opposition to Bernanke's renomination as head of the central bank, fueling speculation that his confirmation could be scuttled.
January 20, 2010 |
Federal Reserve Chairman Ben S. Bernanke, apparently seeking to mollify critics as he awaits Senate confirmation on his reappointment, said Tuesday that he welcomed a government audit of the central bank's role in the intensely unpopular bailout of American International Group Inc. In a letter to the head of the Government Accountability Office, the investigative arm of Congress, Bernanke offered to "make available to the GAO all records and personnel...
January 14, 2010 |
The Federal Reserve's new report on U.S. economic activity in December and early January showed more signs of improvement across the nation. But if you're out of work in the Western states, the Fed's report, released Wednesday, won't provide any solace: Many employers in the region expect to do little if any hiring in 2010, even if sales rise. The Fed's so-called beige book report was relatively upbeat on the nation's economy as a whole, noting that 10 of the central bank's 12 geographic districts reported "some increased activity or improvement in conditions."
January 7, 2010 |
Federal Reserve policymakers, with a nod to the recent strengthening of the economy, still see a modest recovery this year -- one that will bring only a "slow improvement" in the nation's severe unemployment problem. "The weakness in labor markets continued to be an important concern to meeting participants, who generally expected unemployment to remain elevated for quite some time," according to a summary of the central bank's last policy meeting Dec. 15-16. The meeting minutes, released Wednesday with the usual three-week lag, suggest Fed members are in no hurry to raise short-term interest rates, which have been held at near zero since December 2008.
December 18, 2009 |
A Senate panel endorsed Ben S. Bernanke on Thursday for another term as Federal Reserve chairman, clearing the way for a confirmation vote on the Senate floor early next year. The Senate Banking Committee voted 16 to 7 to send to the full Senate Bernanke's nomination for a second four-year term when his current one ends Jan. 31. Although he appears likely to be confirmed, there could be more than a few "no" votes from members of both parties who are dissatisfied with the state of the economy and Bernanke's stewardship of the Fed. Only four of 10 Republicans voted in favor of Bernanke, who is a Republican first appointed by President Bush.