By Steve Goldstein, MarketWatch
Janet Yellen announced Monday that she will step down from the Federal Reserve, after not having been nominated for a second term at the helm of the U.S. central bank.
Yellen, the first woman to run the bank, could have stayed on at the Fed as a governor until 2024, even as President Trump opted to replace her with Jerome Powell.
But Yellen, who also had served as vice chairwoman under Ben Bernanke, as a governor at the Alan Greenspan Fed, and as president of the San Francisco Fed, said it was her great privilege and honor to serve at the Fed over three decades.
“As I prepare to leave the Board, I am gratified that the financial system is much stronger than a decade ago, better able to withstand future bouts of instability and continue supporting the economic aspirations of American families and businesses,” Yellen said. “I am also gratified by the substantial improvement in the economy since the crisis.”
She noted that the U.S. economy has added 17 million jobs over the last eight years and said that, by most metrics, it’s close to achieving the central bank’s dual objectives of maximum employment and price stability.
At 4.1%, the U.S. unemployment rate is near a 17-year low. Inflation, however, has run short of the Fed’s declared 2% target for most of the last five years.
She wrote she was confident that Powell “is deeply committed” to the mission of the central bank.
Yellen said she’ll stay on until her successor is sworn in. The Senate is expected to confirm Powell.