FedFin Assessment: Powell, Brainard Confirmations Confront Challenges

Many of you have asked us to forecast key policy implications ahead of two high-powered hearings this week considering President Biden’s top Fed nominees.  We will as usual provide clients with in-depth analyses after the Senate Banking Committee ponders Chairman Powell’s nomination for a second term on Tuesday and Gov. Brainard’s to become vice chair on Thursday.  Now, we explain why we think Mr. Powell’s confirmation chances – while still good – are not the slam-dunk many media sources suggest and why Gov. Brainard also faces a challenging outlook.  We will not consider the odds that an appointment in the next few days of Sarah Bloom Raskin as vice chair for supervision will alter the political calculus except to say that the last time the White House tried this Sen. Warren (D-MA) didn’t budge.  We don’t expect she will this time.  This report does not consider other pending nominations to join the Board of Governors because none of them are likely to affect policy debate except when it comes to demands for greater Fed diversity.