Yellen, consensus-builder, needs to send strong signal at Fed meet

Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen, praised as an adept listener and consensus builder, may need to adopt a stronger tone at this week’s policy meeting if she expects to keep a December interest rate rise in play.

Yellen’s inclusive style has been tested recently by two fellow governors who publicly appeared to disagree with her view, shared by Vice Chair Stanley Fischer, that the Fed will probably need to raise interest rates this year.

Governors are permanent members of the Fed’s policy-making panel who typically vote with the chair, and it is unusual for them to publicly contradict the Fed chief. Yet both Lael Brainard and Daniel Tarullo, speaking shortly after Yellen and Fischer, listed an array of risks to economic growth that suggested rate hikes should wait.

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