Tags: Kohn | Fischer | Yellen | Fed

Donald Kohn: Fed No. 2 Fischer May Be 'Very Helpful Adjunct' to Yellen

By    |   Friday, 02 January 2015 10:03 AM

Federal Reserve Vice Chairman Stanley Fischer's experience as head of Israel's central bank and a top official at the International Monetary Fund and World Bank may lend added credibility to Fed Chair Janet Yellen, experts say.

He is the most high-profile No. 2 at the Fed in its 100-year history, according to Politico.

Fischer's experience with financial markets might ease investors' worries about Yellen's lack of such experience.

"Stan Fischer has market experience and goodwill that Chair Yellen doesn't have," Jack Ablin, chief investment officer at BMO Private Bank, told Politico. "It's not a slam on the Fed chairman, it's simply different experience."

Donald Kohn, a former Fed vice chairman himself who is now a senior fellow at the Brookings Institution, thinks Fischer can be an asset for Yellen.

"I see him as potentially a very helpful adjunct to the chair," Kohn noted. "I think because of his prominence and because of his experience, particularly in the international arena, he might be more noticeable than past vice chairmen."

While Yellen must do a balancing act with Congress, Fischer will have more open rein.

"Just his sheer experience and authority and his wonderful demeanor and his credibility allows him to interact with the political class in a way which explains what the Fed is thinking, how it's approaching its methodologies, and its mind-set as it's looking to 2015," said Timothy Adams, president of the Institute of International Finance and a Treasury official in the George W. Bush administration.

Meanwhile, though some economists lambaste the Federal Reserve for what they see as an ineffective easing program, Michael Ivanovitch, president of MSI Global research firm, begs to differ.

And he puts his argument in interesting terms, citing the U.S. trade deficit as evidence of strength.

"The accelerating U.S. economy is on course to generate this year a trade deficit of $700 billion — about 4 percent of its GDP, which can be considered as America's net contribution to the growth of the world economy in 2014," Ivanovitch, a former Fed economist, writes in a commentary for CNBC.

"That remarkable achievement must be credited to the Federal Reserve's effective crisis management."

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Federal Reserve Vice Chairman Stanley Fischer's experience as head of Israel's central bank and a top official at the International Monetary Fund and World Bank may lend added credibility to Fed Chair Janet Yellen, experts say.
Kohn, Fischer, Yellen, Fed
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2015-03-02
Friday, 02 January 2015 10:03 AM
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