Janet Yellen Named First Female Chair of Federal Reserve

The Senate on Monday easily approved Janet Yellen's nomination to head the Federal Reserve.

The 56-26 vote makes Yellen the first woman to lead the central bank in its century-long history. It puts an economist in the post who has long focused on fighting unemployment and who backed the Fed's recent efforts to spur the economy with low interest rates and huge bond purchases.

Yellen begins her four-year term as chair on Feb. 1. She replaces Ben Bernanke, who has held the job for eight years dominated by the Great Recession and his efforts to fight it.

Yellen has been Fed vice chair since 2010.

Nominated in October by President Barack Obama, Yellen will be the first Fed chair picked by a Democrat since President Jimmy Carter chose Paul Volcker.

A recent string of positive economic news could turn into a headache for Yellen as she takes the reins at the Federal Reserve.

She faces an immediate challenge that will test her communication and policy skills.

For the full story: http://www.nbcnews.com/business/senate-approves-yellen-fed-chair-2D11869412

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