The Chair of the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System is the head of the Federal Reserve, which is the central banking system of the United States. The position is known colloquially as "Chair of the Fed" or "Fed Chair". The chair is the "active executive officer" of the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System.
The chair is nominated by the President of the United States from among the members of the Board of Governors, and serves a term of four years after being confirmed by the United States Senate. A chair may serve multiple consecutive terms, pending a new nomination and confirmation at the end of each. William Martin was the longest serving chair, holding the position from 1951 to 1970.
The current Chairman is Jerome Powell, who was sworn in on February 5, 2018. He was nominated to the position by President Donald Trump on November 2, 2017, and was later confirmed by the Senate.
|Chair of the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System|
Seal of the Federal Reserve Board of Governors
Flag of the Federal Reserve System
since February 5, 2018
|Appointer||the President of the United States (with Senate advice and consent)|
|Formation||August 10, 1914|
|First holder||Charles Sumner Hamlin|
Section 203 of the Banking Act of 1935 changed the name of the "Federal Reserve Board" to the "Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System." The directors' salaries were significantly lower (at $12,000 when first appointed in 1914) and their terms of office were much shorter prior to 1935. In effect, the Federal Reserve Board members in Washington, D.C., were significantly less powerful than the presidents of the regional Federal Reserve Banks prior to 1935.
In the 1935 Act, the district heads had their titles changed to "President" (e.g., "President of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis").
As stipulated by the Banking Act of 1935, the President of the United States appoints the seven members of the Board of Governors; they must then be confirmed by the Senate and serve fourteen year terms.
The nominees for chair and vice-chair may be chosen by the President from among the sitting Governors for four-year terms; these appointments are also subject to Senate confirmation. The Senate Committee responsible for vetting a Fed Reserve Chair nominee is the Senate Committee on Banking.
By law, the chair reports twice a year to Congress on the Federal Reserve's monetary policy objectives. He or she also testifies before Congress on numerous other issues and meets periodically with the Treasury Secretary.
The law applicable to the Chair and all other members of the Board provides (in part):
No member of the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System shall be an officer or director of any bank, banking institution, trust company, or Federal Reserve bank or hold stock in any bank, banking institution, or trust company; and before entering upon his duties as a member of the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System he shall certify under oath that he has complied with this requirement, and such certification shall be filed with the secretary of the Board.
The following is a list of past and present Chairs of the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System. A chair serves for a four-year term after appointment, but may be reappointed for several consecutive four-year terms. As of 2018, there have been a total of sixteen Fed Chairs.
|Term of office||First Appointed by|
|Start of term||End of term|
|1||Charles Sumner Hamlin
|August 10, 1914||August 10, 1916||Woodrow Wilson|
|2||William P. G. Harding
|August 10, 1916||August 9, 1922|
|3||Daniel R. Crissinger
|May 1, 1923||September 15, 1927||Warren G. Harding|
|4||Roy A. Young
|October 4, 1927||August 31, 1930||Calvin Coolidge|
|September 16, 1930||May 10, 1933||Herbert Hoover|
|6||Eugene Robert Black
|May 19, 1933||August 15, 1934||Franklin D. Roosevelt|
|7||Marriner S. Eccles
|November 15, 1934||February 3, 1948|
|8||Thomas B. McCabe
|April 15, 1948||April 2, 1951||Harry S. Truman|
|9||William M. Martin
|April 2, 1951||February 1, 1970|
|10||Arthur F. Burns
|February 1, 1970||January 31, 1978||Richard Nixon|
|11||G. William Miller
|March 8, 1978||August 6, 1979||Jimmy Carter|
|August 6, 1979||August 11, 1987|
|August 11, 1987||January 31, 2006||Ronald Reagan|
|February 1, 2006||January 31, 2014||George W. Bush|
|February 3, 2014||February 3, 2018||Barack Obama|
|February 5, 2018||Incumbent||Donald Trump|
Alan Greenspan (; born March 6, 1926) is an American economist who served as Chair of the Federal Reserve of the United States from 1987 to 2006. He currently works as a private adviser and provides consulting for firms through his company, Greenspan Associates LLC. First appointed Federal Reserve chairman by President Ronald Reagan in August 1987, he was reappointed at successive four-year intervals until retiring on January 31, 2006, after the second-longest tenure in the position (behind William McChesney Martin).Greenspan came to the Federal Reserve Board from a consulting career. Although he was subdued in his public appearances, favorable media coverage raised his profile to a point that several observers likened him to a "rock star". Democratic leaders of Congress criticized him for politicizing his office because of his support for Social Security privatization and tax cuts, which they felt would increase the deficit.The easy-money policies of the Fed during Greenspan's tenure have been suggested by some to be a leading cause of the dotcom bubble and subprime mortgage crisis, which occurred within a year of his departure from the Fed, and have, said the Wall Street Journal, "tarnished his reputation." Yale economist Robert Shiller argues that "once stocks fell, real estate became the primary outlet for the speculative frenzy that the stock market had unleashed".Albert Nickerson
Albert L. Nickerson (January 17, 1911 – August 7, 1994) was the Chairman and C.E.O. of Mobil Oil, and chair of the Federal Reserve Bank of New York from 1961 to 1966.
Nickerson graduated from Noble and Greenough School in 1929 and Harvard University in 1933. He began working for Mobil in the year of his graduation from Harvard, and eventually rose to become the company's President in 1955, and then Chairman and Chief Executive from 1958 to 1969. He served as Chairman of The Business Council from 1967 to 1968.He served on the board of Rockefeller University and the Boston Symphony Orchestra. He married his wife Elizabeth, in 1934, and had four children, Christine, Albert, Elizabeth and Victoria.Alice Rivlin
Alice Mitchell Rivlin (born March 4, 1931) is an economist and former U.S. Federal Reserve and budget official. She served as Vice Chair of the Federal Reserve, Director of the White House Office of Management and Budget, and founding Director of the Congressional Budget Office. Rivlin is an expert on the U.S. federal budget and macroeconomic policy. She is a senior fellow at the Brookings Institution and visiting professor at Georgetown University. Rivlin also co-chaired, with former Senator Pete Domenici, the Bipartisan Policy Center’s Debt Reduction Task Force.Ben
Ben is frequently used as a shortened version of the given names Benjamin or Benedict, and is also a very common given name in its own right.
The Arabic "Bin" (بن) or "Ibn" (ابن) or "Ben" (dialectal Arabic) means "son of".
Ben (in Hebrew: בֶּן, Son of) forms part of surnames, e.g. Abraham ben Abraham (Hebrew: אברהם בן אברהם). Bar-, "son of" in Aramaic, is also seen, e.g. Simon bar Kokhba (Hebrew: שמעון בר כוכבא).Ben Bernanke
Ben Shalom Bernanke ( bər-NANG-kee; born December 13, 1953) is an American economist at the Brookings Institution who served two terms as Chair of the Federal Reserve, the central bank of the United States, from 2006 to 2014. During his tenure as chair, Bernanke oversaw the Federal Reserve's response to the late-2000s financial crisis.
Before becoming Federal Reserve chair, Bernanke was a tenured professor at Princeton University and chaired the department of economics there from 1996 to September 2002, when he went on public service leave.
From August 5, 2002 until June 21, 2005, he was a member of the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System, proposed the Bernanke Doctrine, and first discussed "the Great Moderation" — the theory that traditional business cycles have declined in volatility in recent decades through structural changes that have occurred in the international economy, particularly increases in the economic stability of developing nations, diminishing the influence of macroeconomic (monetary and fiscal) policy.
Bernanke then served as chairman of President George W. Bush's Council of Economic Advisers before President Bush nominated him to succeed Alan Greenspan as chairman of the United States Federal Reserve. His first term began February 1, 2006. Bernanke was confirmed for a second term as chairman on January 28, 2010, after being renominated by President Barack Obama, who later referred to him as "the epitome of calm." His second term ended January 31, 2014, when he was succeeded by Janet Yellen on February 3, 2014.
Bernanke wrote about his time as chairman of the Federal Reserve in his 2015 book, The Courage to Act, in which he revealed that the world's economy came close to collapse in 2007 and 2008. Bernanke asserts that it was only the novel efforts of the Fed (cooperating with other agencies and agencies of foreign governments) that prevented an economic catastrophe greater than the Great Depression.Charles Sumner Hamlin
Charles Sumner Hamlin (August 30, 1861 – April 24, 1938) was an American lawyer. He was the first Chairman of the Federal Reserve, serving from 1914 to 1916.Daniel Richard Crissinger
Daniel Richard Crissinger (December 10, 1860 – July 12, 1942) was a U.S. banker and lawyer. He served as chairman of the Federal Reserve Board between 1923 and 1927.Esther George
Esther L. George (born c. 1958) is president and chief executive of the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City.
George is a native of Faucett, Missouri, U.S., and received a BSBA degree in Business Administration from Missouri Western State University and an MBA degree from the University of Missouri-Kansas City. She is a graduate of the American Bankers Association Stonier Graduate School of Banking and the Stanford Graduate School of Business.She joined the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City in 1982 and held various leadership positions with the Bank, including in the Bank's research support functions, Public Affairs and Human Resources. In 2001 she became the bank's senior vice president in the Bank's Division of Supervision and Risk Management. In 2009 she was named executive vice president in charge of the unit. She is a former chair of the Federal Reserve System's Community Banking Organizations Management Group.She was appointed to the Kansas City Fed President position on October 1, 2011.Eugene Robert Black
Eugene Robert Black I (January 7, 1873 – December 19, 1934) was the Chairman of the Federal Reserve from May 9, 1933 to August 15, 1934.Forbes list of The World's 100 Most Powerful Women
Since 2004, Forbes has compiled a list of the 100 most powerful women in the world. It is edited by notable Forbes journalists, including Moira Forbes, and is based on visibility and economic impact. German Chancellor Angela Merkel has remained at the top spot since 2006, with the brief exception of 2010 where she was temporarily supplanted by the then U.S. First Lady Michelle Obama.Forbes list of The World's Most Powerful People
Since 2009, the business magazine, Forbes had compiled an annual list of the world's most powerful people. The list has one slot for every 100 million people, meaning in 2009 there were 67 people on the list and by 2018 there were 75. Slots are allocated based on the amount of human and financial resources that they have sway over, as well as their influence on world events.Janet Yellen
Janet Louise Yellen (born August 13, 1946) is an American economist who served as the Chair of the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System from 2014–2018, and as Vice Chair from 2010 to 2014. Previously, she was President and Chief Executive Officer of the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco; Chair of the White House Council of Economic Advisers under President Bill Clinton; and business professor at the University of California, Berkeley, Haas School of Business.
Yellen was nominated by President Obama to succeed Ben Bernanke as Chairwoman of the United States Federal Reserve. On January 6, 2014, the U.S. Senate confirmed Yellen's nomination. She was sworn in on February 3, 2014, making her the first woman to hold the position.Jerome Powell
Jerome Hayden "Jay" Powell (born February 4, 1953) is the 16th and current Chair of the Federal Reserve, serving in that office since February 2018. He was nominated to the Fed Chair position by President Donald Trump, and confirmed by the United States Senate.Powell earned a degree in politics from Princeton University in 1975 and a Juris Doctor from Georgetown University Law Center in 1979. He moved to investment banking in 1984, and has since worked for several financial institutions. He briefly served as Under Secretary of the Treasury for Domestic Finance under President George H. W. Bush in 1992. More recently, he was a visiting scholar at the Bipartisan Policy Center from 2010 to 2012. He has served as a member of the Federal Reserve Board of Governors since 2012. He is the first Chair of the Federal Reserve to not hold a Ph.D. in Economics since 1987.Lee Bollinger
Lee Carroll Bollinger (born April 30, 1946) is an American lawyer and educator who is serving as the 19th president of Columbia University. Formerly the president of the University of Michigan, he is a noted legal scholar of the First Amendment and freedom of speech. He was at the center of two notable United States Supreme Court cases regarding the use of affirmative action in admissions processes.
In July 2010, Bollinger was appointed Chair of the Federal Reserve Bank of New York board of directors for 2011. Previously, he had served as Deputy Chair.Monetary hawk and dove
A monetary hawk, or hawk for short, is someone who advocates keeping inflation low as the top priority in monetary policy. In contrast, a monetary dove is someone who emphasizes other issues, especially low unemployment, over low inflation.
The two terms are commonly used in the United States to describe members and nominees to the Federal Reserve Board of Governors, who have major influence on United States monetary policy in their roles as Federal Reserve Governors and as members of the Federal Open Market Committee. The terms are also used outside of the United States, in places such as the United Kingdom and India. The term "pigeon" has been used to describe individuals who take positions between those of hawks and doves, although the term "centrist" is also used.
Doves generally are more in favor of expansionary monetary policy, including low interest rates, while hawks tend to favor "tight" monetary policy. For example, doves in the United States tend to favor quantitative easing, seeing it as a way to stimulate the economy, while hawks tend to oppose quantitative easing, seeing it as a distortion of asset markets. Additionally, hawks tend to project higher future inflation, and hence see more risk from inflation and a greater need for tight monetary policies, while doves tend to predict lower future inflation, and hence see more need for expansionary monetary policies.An individual can be a hawk in some cases and a dove in others. For example, Janet Yellen was described as a hawk during the economic boom of the 1990s, but was usually described as a dove when she was nominated to the position of Chair of the Federal Reserve. Additionally, the label of "hawk" and "dove" may be applied differently depending on the point of view.The hawk–dove dichotomy has been criticized as overly simplistic, especially in times of deflation or low inflation. For example, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis President James Bullard has been described as a "deflation hawk" for favoring policies that would raise inflation to a target of 2 percent per year. Washington Post columnist Neil Irwin used the term "bubble hawk" to describe those who focus on using monetary policy to fight financial bubbles.Paul Tucker (banker)
Sir Paul Tucker (born 24 March 1958) is a British economist and central banker. He was formerly the Deputy Governor of the Bank of England, with responsibility for financial stability, and served on the Bank's Monetary Policy Committee from June 2002 until October 2013 and its interim and then full Financial Policy Committee from June 2011. In November 2012 he was turned down for the position of governor in favour of Mark Carney. In June 2013, Tucker announced that he would leave the Bank of England, and later that he would be moving to Harvard. He was knighted in the 2014 New Year Honours for services to central banking.Since late 2013, Tucker has been a Fellow at the Harvard Kennedy School’s Mossavar-Rahmani Center for Business and Government. He is a Senior Fellow at Harvard's Center for European Studies.Tucker's book, Unelected Power: The Quest for Legitimacy in Central Banking and the Regulatory State, was published in May 2018 by Princeton University Press.Tucker was educated at Codsall High School, Wolverhampton, and graduated from Trinity College, Cambridge, where he studied maths and philosophy. He joined the Bank of England very shortly afterwards, in 1980.From 1980-1989 Tucker worked in banking supervision; in corporate finance at a merchant bank; on reforming Hong Kong following the 1987 crash, and then the UK's wholesale payments system, leading to the introduction of real-time gross settlement. He was Principal Private Secretary to Leigh-Pemberton, BOE Governor, for nearly four years until 1993. He became Head of Gilt-Edged & Money Markets Division in mid-1994, during a period of reforms in the money markets. He was Head of Monetary Assessment and Strategy Division 1997-1998, responsible for assessing UK monetary conditions and issues concerning the monetary framework. From January 1999, he was Deputy Director of Financial Stability, and was closely involved with the Bank's Financial Stability Review. From 1997 to 2002, he was also on the Secretariat of the Monetary Policy Committee, preparing the published minutes. Starting in June 2002, he was Executive Director for Markets, with responsibility for (i) the Bank's implementation of monetary policy and the management of its balance sheet more generally, including management of UK's foreign currency reserves; and (ii) for market intelligence and analysis supporting the Bank's monetary and financial stability core purposes.He was appointed a member of the Bank of England’s Monetary Policy Committee and Executive Director for Markets from June 2002; and as Deputy Governor of the Bank of England with effect from March 2009.While Deputy Governor, Tucker became a director of the Bank for International Settlements, and later also chaired the Basel Committee on Payment and Settlement Systems (CPSS). During this period, he was a member of the Steering Committee of the G20 Financial Stability Board ("FSB").
In 2009 Tucker became the first chair of the FSB's Working Group on Cross-Border Crisis Management. According to the British Bankers Association, Tucker was “one of the first to set out thinking on ways to deepen the resolution regime”, in particular to develop "a super special resolution framework that permitted the authorities, on a rapid timetable, to haircut uninsured creditors in a going concern”. Tucker helped to develop the conceptual architecture of bail-in, and also got the FSB and G-20 behind the proposal. In October 2011, the FSB Working Group published the "Key Attributes of Effective Resolution Regimes for Financial Institutions". This document set out core principles to be adopted by all participating jurisdictions, including the legal and operational capability for such a super special resolution regime (now known as 'bail-in').. In late 2012, Tucker co-authored an op-ed with FDIC Chairman Martin Gruenberg that described how different countries should cooperate on the resolution of a cross-border bank.A July 2012 memo submitted to the Treasury Select Committee and released by the Wall Street Journal suggested that Tucker may have implicitly pressured Barclays to manipulate its Libor submissions by relaying a message from senior members of the UK government that "it did not always need to be the case that [Barclays] appeared as high as [Barclays] has recently." The memo also noted that Diamond did not believe he received an instruction from Tucker. In August 2012, the Treasury Select Committee noted in its report into Libor that the conclusion of the Financial Services Authority was that "no instruction for Barclays to lower its LIBOR submissions was given during this telephone conversation", but that "as the substance of the telephone conversation was relayed down the chain of command at Barclays, a misunderstanding or miscommunication occurred" so that "Barclays' Submitters believed mistakenly that they were operating under an instruction from the Bank of England". The U.S. Department of Justice and the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission also came to similar conclusions following their investigations.In December 2015, Tucker became chair of the Systemic Risk Council, a body set up in 2012 by former regulators and central bankers to promote financial stability. Its first chair was Sheila Bair, former Chair of the FDIC, and its members include Paul Volcker (former Chair of the Federal Reserve) and Jean-Claude Trichet (former President of the European Central Bank). Since Tucker became chair, the SRC has issued a statement to G20 Finance Ministers and Governors on financial reform and, among other things, intervened on various US Treasury proposals to roll back financial regulation.Following the 2016 referendum on European Union membership in the United Kingdom, Tucker co-authored a paper with Jean Pisani-Ferry, André Sapir, Norbert Rottgen and Guntram Wolff which lays out a proposal of a “continental partnership” between the EU and the UK. According to the paper, such a partnership would grant Britain some control over labor mobility while preserving free movement of capital, goods and services In November 2018, Tucker was elected President of the UK’s National Institute of Economic and Social Research.Primus inter pares
Primus inter pares (Ancient Greek: Πρῶτος μεταξὺ ἴσων, prōtos metaxỳ ísōn) is a Latin phrase meaning first among equals. It is typically used as an honorary title for someone who is formally equal to other members of their group but is accorded unofficial respect, traditionally owing to their seniority in office. Historically, the princeps senatus of the Roman Senate was such a figure and initially bore only the distinction that he was allowed to speak first during debate. Also, Constantine the Great was given the role of primus inter pares. However, the term is also often used ironically or self-deprecatingly by leaders with much higher status as a form of respect, camaraderie, or propaganda. After the fall of the Republic, Roman emperors initially referred to themselves only as princeps despite having power of life and death over their "fellow citizens". Various modern figures such as the Chair of the Federal Reserve, the prime minister of parliamentary regimes, the Federal President of Switzerland, the Chief Justice of the United States, the Chief Justice of the Philippines, the Archbishop of Canterbury of the Anglican Communion and the Ecumenical Patriarch of the Eastern Orthodox Church fall under both senses: bearing higher status and various additional powers while remaining still merely equal to their peers in important senses.Roy A. Young
Roy Archibald Young (May 17, 1882 – December 31, 1960) was an American banker. Most significantly, he was chairman of the Federal Reserve Board between 1927 and 1930 during the presidencies of Calvin Coolidge and Herbert Hoover. During his tenure as chairman of the Federal Reserve Board, the Stock Market Crash of 1929 occurred and the United States went into an economic depression. He also was president of the Federal Reserve Banks in Minneapolis (1919-1927) and Boston (1930-1942).Yellen
Yellen is a surname. Notable people with the surname include:
Alexander Yellen (born 1981), American cinematographer
Jack Yellen (1892–1991), American lyricist
Janet Yellen (born 1946), American economist and previous Chair of the Federal Reserve System
Larry Yellen (born 1943), American baseball pitcher
Linda Yellen (born 1949), American director, producer and writer of film and TV
Sherman Yellen (born 1932), American playwright