Biden Aide Demurs on Question of Second Fed Term for Powell

A senior White House economic aide deflected the question of whether President Joe Biden will offer Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell a second four-year term, saying the decision on selecting the next central bank chief will come after a thorough “process.”

“I’m not going to get into that. Neither yes nor no at this point,” Jared Bernstein, a member of Biden’s Council of Economic Advisers, told a Politico event Tuesday in response to question on whether the president should re-nominate Jerome Powell as Fed chair. “It’s a process that hasn’t -- that we have to go through before we even start talking about it,” he said.

Biden Aide Demurs on Question of Second Fed Term for Powell

Powell’s tenure at the helm of the U.S. central bank expires in February. Biden said last month that he hadn’t spoken to Powell out of respect for the institution’s independence.

Powell has repeatedly declined to say if he’d serve a second term if asked, but has also declared how much he loves his job in terms that leave a clear impression that he’s open to staying at the Fed’s helm.

Powell, 68, was appointed to the Fed’s Board of Governors by President Barack Obama and elevated to chair by his successor Donald Trump.

Biden is expected to weigh the choice of Fed chair, as well as other positions at the central bank, in coming months. He is already being lobbied to use a current vacancy on the seven-seat board in Washington to bring greater diversity to the central bank.

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