Janet Yellen

Janet Yellen Confirmed as Fed Chair

First woman to hold the position


The Senate confirmed Janet L. Yellen as the chairwoman of the Federal Reserve, marking the first time that a woman has led the country's central bank in its 100-year history.

As a Fed official, Ms. Yellen, 67, has been an influential proponent of the Fed's extraordinary measures to revive the economy, even though interest rates are already close to zero. But as chairwoman, Ms. Yellen's arduous task will be to oversee the gradual unwinding of those extraordinary measures, despite an uncomfortably high unemployment rate of 7 percent and subdued inflation.

During the confirmation process, senators from both sides of the aisle criticized the Fed for not doing enough to aid the economy and help middle-class Americans, and for trying to do too much, thus distorting the markets and risking new bubbles.