Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen said on Monday she will resign her seat on the Fed's Board of Governors once Jerome Powell is confirmed and sworn in to replace her as head of the U.S. central bank.
Yellen's four-year term as Fed chair ends on February 3, but she could have chosen to remain on the seven-member Fed board.
Yellen said in her resignation letter it was "a great privilege and honor" to serve in the Fed system for three decades and expressed faith in Jerome Powell's commitment to the Fed's mission.
Powell, also on the seven-member Fed board, must be confirmed by the Senate before assuming his new job. Board terms run for 14 years.
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Environmentalists and landowners along the route have opposed the project over such concerns as spills and climate change. Rejected by President Obama in 2015, the pipeline was approved by the Trump administration in May.
Media reports said last week Trump was considering appointing Allianz economic advisor Mohamed El-Erian as a Fed vice-chair. Fed chiefs typically have stepped down from the board after finishing their term as chair.
Yellen was appointed by then President Barack Obama in 2014 as the chair of the USA central bank. In 2014, Yellen succeeded Ben Bernanke to become the first woman to head the US central bank.
Yellen, credited with putting the economy on a firmer footing and steering monetary policy away from the firefighting mode that followed the 2007-2009 recession and financial crisis, could have stayed on as a Fed governor until 2024.
"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", she wrote in a November 20 resignation letter to President Donald Trump.
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AT&T's stock slid on the news but still traded 0.4% higher on Monday afternoon, while Time Warner shares slipped 1.1% for the day. We see no legitimate reason for our merger to be treated differently.
Shawn Sebastian, co-director of the Fed Up coalition, a collection of progressive groups, called Yellen's departure "a loss for working people across the country".
Mr Trump is the first president in his first term since Jimmy Carter not to reappoint the sitting central bank chief.
The White House said he considered re-nominating Yellen, the first woman to lead the central bank, for a second four-year term, but in the end, he opted for Powell, a Republican, over Yellen, a Democrat.
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"He did a great job of mentoring Hopkins and now you see how he's one of the top guys in the game", Fitzgerald said. The President's comments resulted in more than 200 players taking a knee or linking arms the following weekend.