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8/21/13

Regarding Yellen versus Summers

On the eve of Jackson Hole, likely to turn into a Fed gossipfest like no other before, your humble scribe throws his dos centavitos into the mix. 

The case for Janet Yellen has been summed up very well by Edward Harrison in this NYT piece. Here's the showdown section:
Janet Yellen has all of the right qualifications: two top-flight economics degrees, work as a tenured professor at University of California at Berkeley, head of the Council of Economic Advisors, six years as head of the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco, four years as a voting member of the Federal Reserve's Open Market Committee and three years as vice chairwoman of the entire Federal Reserve System. The Wall Street Journal recently scored 14 Fed policymakers on 700 predictions they made on growth, jobs and inflation during the tumultuous period from 2009 to 2012. According to the report, the "most accurate forecasts overall came from Ms. Yellen." Furthermore, Fed minutes have revealed that Yellen was one of the only top Fed policy makers who warned about the housing bubble before the crisis. Despite significant policy differences with Yellen, former F.D.I.C. head Sheila Bair summed up the pro-Yellen case best, writing that "Yellen is clearly the most qualified successor to follow Ben Bernanke. There is no reason to pass her over for less-qualified males." I agree.
The case for Larry Summers: He has a penis.

In other words I fear the worst, but if the prize idiot we know as Obama does indeed pick Summers (or more accurately "is instructed to pick Summers by the people who run the country"), you'll be glad you were owning gold bullion at the time.