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Yellen emerges as top Fed candidate, White House official says

By Athena Jones, CNN
updated 2:53 PM EDT, Wed September 18, 2013
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Janet Yellen, the No 2 Fed official, would succeed Ben Bernanke if nominated and confirmed
  • Yellen's status was elevated after Larry Summers withdrew his name from consideration
  • President Barack Obama plans to nominate Bernanke's successor this fall

Washington (CNN) -- Federal Reserve Vice Chairman Janet Yellen has emerged as the leading candidate to replace Ben Bernanke as Fed chairman, a White House official tells CNN's Athena Jones.

This comes after Larry Summers, after months of contentious debate, withdrew his name from consideration to head the central bank over the weekend in a process that some say has become unusually politicized.

Summers was often discussed as President Barack Obama's preferred choice for the job. He was a key economic adviser during the president's first term and is a former treasury secretary.

There was no information on Wednesday about when a final decision on a nomination would be made.

Bernanke's term ends in January and Obama plans to select a successor this fall.

If nominated and confirmed by the Senate, Yellen would become the first woman to hold the job. She has the support of a number of Democrats on Capitol Hill as well as many fellow economists.

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