President Barack Obama’s
nomination of Janet Yellen to chair the Federal Reservecould make a protracted fight over raising the nation’s debt ceiling much more complicated, according to Chris Krueger, a D.C.-based analyst for Guggenheim Partners LLC.
Krueger wrote in a market commentary Wednesday that if the two sides do hash out a deal that would extend that extends government funding and borrowing authority for the next few weeks, Yellen’s confirmation process would add another fiscal wrinkle into the fray.
From the commentary:
The announcement last night that Obama would nominate Fed Vice Chair Janet Yellen to replace Fed Chair Ben Bernanke today at a 3 p.m. White House event has only complicated the remainder of the month and likely next. Yellen’s Banking Committee hearing probably would not be until the week of October 21st at the earliest with a Committee confirmation vote to follow. We believe that she will be narrowly confirmed, though the timing of this announcement is very strange.
Krueger thinks that Republicans will use the Yellen nomination during the shutdown and debt-ceiling debates to make it clear that Obama “owns” quantitative easing, the eventual taper, and more in monetary policy. He said that it’s likely the two fiscal battles in Congress could last throughout Yellen’s confirmation process.
The hearing and subsequent Senate Floor debate will likely be used by Senate Republicans as a vehicle to debate and criticise Obama’s economic policies — both fiscal and monetary. There are 32 Senators that are new to the Senate since January 2010 (Bernanke’s reconfirmation, which was the tightest on record), including likely Fed critics such as Sens. Rand Paul (R-KY) and Ted Cruz (R-TX), who have never seen a Fed Chairman nomination process.This is going to be a very public and very political spectacle in the wake of the October 17 debt ceiling showdown — which is very likely to end in some version of a short-term kick the can, so we could well still be in a protracted shutdown and debt ceiling fight for the entire Yellen confirmation process.
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