In the very near future, the Senate Banking Committee will schedule hearings on Janet Yellen’s nomination to be Chairwoman of the Federal Reserve. President Obama picked Yellen to replace Ben Bernanke who retires in early 2014.
Yellen’s nomination signals a continuation of the Federal Reserve’s efforts to stimulate the economy and a commitment to re-gaining maximum employment. As the central bank’s vice chair, Yellen pressed for stronger measures to reduce unemployment. She has expressed a great concern about the economic consequences of unemployment, a strong conviction in the Fed’s ability to stimulate job growth and a willingness to reduce unemployment quickly.
“These are not just statistics to me,” said Yellen in a speech to the AFL-CIO last February. “We know that long-term unemployment is devastating to workers and their families. Longer spells of unemployment raise the risk of homelessness and have been a factor contributing to the foreclosure crisis. When you’re unemployed for six months or a year, it is hard to qualify for a lease, so even the option of relocating to find a job is often off the table. The toll is simply terrible on the mental and physical health of workers, on their marriages, and on their children.”
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