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Fed's Powell, Jefferson to get Senate nod this week

Economy May 11, 2022 04:31PM ET
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© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell testifies before the Senate Banking Committee in Washington, U.S., March 3, 2022. Tom Williams/Pool via REUTERS

By David Morgan

(Reuters) -Jerome Powell, nominated for a second term as chair of the U.S. Federal Reserve, could win Senate confirmation as soon as late Wednesday, according to a timeline outlined by Senate Banking Committee Chair Sherrod Brown.

Lawmakers are also expected to vote on President Joe Biden's other Fed nominee, Davidson College dean of faculty Philip Jefferson, who would become only the fourth Black man to serve as a Fed governor in the central bank's history.

Late Tuesday, Michigan State University economics professor Lisa Cook won Senate confirmation as the Fed's first Black woman governor.

Asked the status of the remaining Fed Board confirmation votes, Brown told Reuters that they could take place “either tonight or tomorrow. ... I’m confident we’ll get them done by tomorrow.”

Both Powell and Jefferson have support from both Biden's Democrats and Republicans and are expected to sail through the process. Powell remains in charge of U.S. monetary policy and is leading the Fed's attack on inflation with what is expected to be a series of hefty interest rate hikes.

Partisan fights over Biden's other Fed nominees have dragged on for months.

Republicans uniformly opposed Cook's confirmation, delaying a vote scheduled last month and forcing Vice President Kamala Harris to cast a tie-breaking vote on the Senate floor Tuesday.

Most also opposed Biden's elevation of Governor Lael Brainard to the position of Fed vice chair, who was confirmed on a 52-43 vote in late April.

Biden's pick for Fed vice chair of supervision, Sarah Bloom Raskin, withdrew from consideration after Democrat Joe Manchin joined a united Republican opposition.

Fed's Powell, Jefferson to get Senate nod this week
 

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