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Yellen seen as likely fed nominee after Summers exit

Sept. 17 (Bloomberg) -- Janet Yellen is overwhelmingly seen as likely to be nominated as chairman of the Federal Reserve to succeed Ben S. Bernanke, according to a Bloomberg survey of economists.

Fifty-six of 65 economists in the survey, or 86 percent, said President Barack Obama is likely to pick Yellen, the Fed’s vice chairman. The survey was taken yesterday and today, after former Treasury Secretary Lawrence Summers withdrew from contention. A Sept. 6 poll showed that 49 percent of economists expected Summers to be Obama’s pick, compared with 38 percent for Yellen.

“The smart political move is to find someone who will sail to confirmation,” said Sarah Binder, a senior fellow at the Brookings Institution who studies the relationship between the Fed and Congress. “Yellen clearly fits the bill.”

Summers, who served as Obama’s top economic adviser in the president’s first term, withdrew his name two days ago rather than face what he said would be an “acrimonious” confirmation process. Four Democrats on the Senate Banking Committee, which approves Fed nominees before they are considered by the full Senate, had signaled opposition to Summers.

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