We will miss Dr Yellen—more than perhaps most people currently realiseby George Magnus / December 4, 2017 / Leave a comment
Janet Yellen, who took up her position as Chair of the Federal Reserve in February 2014, gave what was probably her last official testimony in this capacity to Congress last week. She will chair just two more meetings of the Federal Open Market Committee. We will miss her, more than perhaps most people think currently. For, as I have pointed out here before, the crisis she would normally have managed will now fall to her successor, Jay Powell. He may turn out to be a competent central banker, but he’s not an economist.
Janet Yellen is a top economist, having taught at both Harvard and the LSE. She has a long list of highly-cited publications. She has been a most capable and respected head of the Fed, one of the most important institutions in the global economic system. As the first woman to hold that position, she was a trail-blazer to boot. She tolerated constructive dissent among colleagues, and had a great way with words when explaining complex economic issues. Frankly, I can’t imagine any economic adversity in which it wouldn’t be better for Dr Yellen to still be running the show.