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Jerome Powell sworn in as US Federal Reserve chairman

Published: February 06, 2018 12:17:15 | Updated: February 07, 2018 15:48:07


Jerome Powell (R) takes the oath of office as Chairman of the US Federal Reserve, succeeding Janet Yellen, in Washington, United States on Monday. - Xinhua photo

Jerome Powell took the oath of office as Chairman of the US Federal Reserve, succeeding Janet Yellen.

"Today, unemployment is low, the economy is growing, and inflation is low. Through our decisions on monetary policy, we will support continued economic growth, a healthy job market, and price stability," said Powell after being sworn in on Monday to lead the US central bank.

Powell, who is the 16th person to hold the position, was nominated by President Donald Trump in November last year. US Senate approved him in late January to lead the central bank in a term of four years, according to a Xinhua report.

"My colleagues and I will remain vigilant, and we are prepared to respond to evolving risks," Powell said.

The new Fed head faces an immediate challenge from the wobbly market, as the US stocks opened sharply lower on Monday after a heavy sell-off on Friday.

One of the worries from the market is that the Fed, under Powell, will accelerate its interest rate hikes, undermining the momentum of a bull market. Economists widely expect the Fed to hike interest rates three times this year, with the first coming in March.

In his confirmation hearing at the Senate Banking Committee in November, Powell indicated that he would continue the gradual monetary policy normalisation strategy laid out by his predecessor Yellen.

 

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