Trump taps two new nominees for Fed board

AFP – Donald Trump said Tuesday he intends to nominate two new candidates to the board of the Federal Reserve, which the US president has assailed over its reluctance to lower interest rates.

Judy Shelton is a conservative economist and outspoken critic of the central bank, who is currently US executive director at the European Bank of Reconstruction and Development and has served on the board of Hilton Hotels.

Christopher Waller is a former economics professor at the University of Notre Dame and the director of research at the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, Missouri.

The US president made the announcement via Twitter.

Trump has repeatedly ignored norms designed to protect the independent Fed from political influence, and routinely lambasts the central bank for raising interest rates which he claims is hold back US growth.

The Fed has a seven-member board, but has had openings for many months.

Two candidates previously tapped by Trump for the Fed board — conservative economic commentator Stephen Moore and former pizza executive Herman Cain — withdrew from consideration in recent months amid criticism of their record.

Trump has named three current Fed members to the board, including Vice Chairman Richard Clarida, and also promoted Jerome Powell to his current post as board chair.

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