ENG: Ben Shalom Bernanke (born December 13, 1953) is an American economist, and the current Chairman of the Federal Reserve, the central bank of the United States. During his tenure as Chairman, Bernanke has overseen the response of the Federal Reserve to late-2000s financial crisis.
Bernanke was a tenured professor at Princeton University and was chair of the Department of Economics there from 1996 to September 2002, when he went on public service leave. From 2002 until 2005, he served as a member of the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System. Here he outlined the Bernanke Doctrine and first spoke of the Great Moderation, where he postulated that we are in a new era, where modern macroeconomic policy has decreased the volatility of the business cycle. He then served as Chairman of President George W. Bush's Council of Economic Advisers before President Bush appointed him to be Chairman of the United States Federal Reserve on February 1, 2006. Bernanke was confirmed for a second term as Chairman on January 28, 2010, after being nominated by President Barack Obama.
Chairman of the United States Federal Reserve
His first months as chairman of the Federal Reserve System were marked by difficulties communicating with the media. An advocate of more transparent Fed policy and clearer statements than Greenspan had made, he had to back away from his initial idea of stating clearer inflation goals as such statements tended to affect the stock market. Maria Bartiromo disclosed on CNBC comments from their private conversation at the White House Correspondents' Association Dinner. She reported that Bernanke said investors had misinterpreted his comments as indicating that he was "dovish" on inflation. He was sharply criticized for making public statements about Fed direction, which he said was a "lapse in judgment."
On August 25, 2009, President Obama announced he would nominate Bernanke to a second term as chairman of the Federal Reserve.
In a short statement in Martha's Vineyard, with Bernanke standing at his side, Obama said Bernanke's background, temperament, courage and creativity helped to prevent another Great Depression in 2008. When Senate Banking Committee hearings on his nomination began on December 3, 2009, several senators from both parties indicated they would not support a second term. However, Bernanke was confirmed for a second term as Chairman on January 28, 2010, by a 70–30 vote of the full Senate, historically the narrowest margin for any occupant of the position.
Bernanke has been subjected to criticism concerning the late-2000s financial crisis. According to The New York Times, Bernanke "has been attacked for failing to foresee the financial crisis, for bailing out Wall Street, and, most recently, for injecting an additional $600 billion into the banking system to give the slow recovery a boost." In his 2009 book End the Fed, Congressman Ron Paul wrote, referring to Bernanke, "there is something fishy about the head of the world's most powerful government bureaucracy, one that is involved in a full-time counterfeiting operation to sustain monopolistic financial cartels, and the world’s most powerful central planner, who sets the price of money worldwide, proclaiming the glories of capitalism."