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Bandwagon for Former UC Prof Yellen to be Fed Chief Builds Steam

The front-runner position of UC Berkeley Professor Emeritus Janet Yellen to become the next Federal Reserve Board chair appears to be strengthening following some initial doubt after the Sunday withdrawal of Lawrence Summers as a candidate.

Federal Reserve Board Vice Chair, Janet Yellen, a professor emeritus at the University of California at Berkeley Haas School of Business. Photo credit: UC Berkeley’s Haas School of Business
Federal Reserve Board Vice Chair, Janet Yellen, a professor emeritus at the University of California at Berkeley Haas School of Business. Photo credit: UC Berkeley’s Haas School of Business
After some doubts earlier this week, momentum appears to be building for UC Berkeley Professor Emeritus Janet Yellen to become the next chair of the Federal Reserve Board.

The question of who will succeed Ben Bernanke became front page news at the beginning of the week after a leading candidate, former Treasury Secretary Lawrence Summers, told President Obama on Sunday that he decided to withdraw from consideration.

Yellen, currently the Fed vice chair, has long been considered one of the top candidates, but America's leading financial paper, the Wall Street Journal reported in its lead story Monday that "the public lobbying on her behalf appears to have annoyed the President."

The article noted also that a Yellen colleague at the UC Berkeley Haas School of Business, J. Bradford DeLong, was a "Summers backer."

By Tuesday, however, the front page of the Wall Street Journal bore the headline, "Yellen Is Now Top Fed Hopeful."

And today, Wednesday, came a strong vote of support from DeLong, a former Deputy Assistant Secretary of the Treasury for Economic Policy in the Clinton.

In a post on the Berkeley Blog, a platform for UC Berkeley professors, DeLong began his essay with "Why Janet Yellen is now best choice to lead the Federal Reserve."

"Janet Yellen, the current vice-chair, stands head, shoulders and torso above the rest of those on the shortlist," wrote DeLong, whose office once sat next to Yellen's corner office.

Do you have a view on who the next Fed chair should be? You can add your thoughts in the comments.

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