Economics professor nominated to Fed board

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WASHINGTON: President Donald Trump has nominated well-known economist and university professor Marvin Goodfriend to fill a vacant seat on the Federal Reserve board, one of four he has left to fill.

The White House sent the nomination to the Senate late Wednesday to be confirmed for a place on the seven-seat board of governors that sets interest rates and plays a key role in bank regulation.

This will be Trump’s third appointment to the Fed after selecting Jerome Powell to replace Janet Yellen as Fed chair, and Randal Quarles, a lawyer and financier, to the new position of vice chair in charge of financial regulation.

Yellen’s term as Fed chair ends Feb. 3, and she has said she will not stay on to complete her 14-year term as governor. That will leave Lael Brainard as the lone remaining central banker, other than Powell, to have been appointed by President Barack Obama.


Goodfriend, a professor of economics and monetary theory at Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, will fill an unexpired 14-year term as a Fed governor.

He previously worked at the Richmond (Virginia) Federal Reserve Bank as a research director. Unlike Powell he has a doctorate in economics.

But Goodfriend also has been a critic of Fed policies, including the massive asset purchases made to support the recovery from the 2008 financial crisis.

And he has supported some measures introduced by Republicans in Congress to make the Fed more accountable for its monetary policy decisions—something Yellen has opposed as a dangerous introduction of politics into what should be an independent central bank.

Trump also will need to name a new Fed vice chair to serve under Powell, after Stanley Fischer announced he was stepping down a few months early.

Names circulating in the press of possible candidates include Mohamed El-Erian, an economist and former chief of California-based investment fund Pimco.

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