Fischer's Foibles Trouble Critics of Fed Nomination

By:  Jack Kenny
02/03/2014
       
Fischer's Foibles Trouble Critics of Fed Nomination

If some of Stanley Fischer's press clippings are accurate descriptions of his powers and abilities, the banking superstar should descend on the Federal Reserve with a capital "S" on his chest and his red cape flowing behind him.

The former governor of the Bank of Israel has been receiving rave reviews since his pick by President Obama for the No. 2 position at the Fed was announced last December by Israeli television, a full month before Obama announced the choice on January 10. If confirmed by the Senate, Fischer (shown in photo) will become the vice chairman of the Federal Reserve Board, succeeding Janet Yellen, who has been nominated to succeed Chairman Ben Bernanke. Bernanke, who announced his retirement last year, spent his last day at the Fed on Friday after eight years at the helm of the nation's central bank. 

Fischer's nomination is "A Perfect Ten Strike," wrote a bowled-over headline writer at Forbes magazine. "It's almost like a central bank hall of fame," declared Robert Hall, chairman of the National Bureau of Economic Research's committee that decides when expansions begin and end. Bloomberg News quoted him as noting that Yellen and Fischer "have a huge track record as central bankers."

"I don't know why he wants to do this, but we should be so lucky," wrote Bo Cutter on the "Next New Deal" blog of the Roosevelt Institute. 

Fischer, 70, has cast a long shadow both as an international banker and a professor of economics at MIT, where his all-star roster of students included Bernanke, who counts Fischer among his most influential mentors; Mario Draghi, president of the European Central Bank; N. Gregory Mankiw, chairman of the Council of Economic Advisers under President George W. Bush; and Olivier Blanchard, chief economist at the International Monetary Fund.

"Stanley Fischer would be the perfect choice, given his unique combination of skills, qualities, and experience," Harvard economics professor Jeffrey Frankel wrote in praise of his fellow member of the Council on Foreign Relations, the influential organization best known for its tireless advocacy of a world-government agenda. Fischer's CFR credentials and his impressive resumé as a powerful figure in the world of international banking suggest he will fit well on a Federal Reserve Board, headed by CFR member Yellen. Obama has announced his choice of two other prominent CFR members, Leal Brainard and Jerome Powell, to serve on the Fed's seven-member governing board.

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Photo of Stanley Fischer: AP Images

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