Trump Narrows Fed Leader Search to Five Candidates -- 2nd Update

By Peter Nicholas and Kate Davidson Features Dow Jones Newswires

President Donald Trump said Tuesday he soon will choose a Federal Reserve chairman, having narrowed his search to five finalists.

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"Honestly, I like them all, I do," the president said at a news conference in the Rose Garden. "I have a great respect for all of them."

A White House official said earlier Tuesday that Mr. Trump is expected to make a decision before his trip to Asia, which begins Nov. 3.

Mr. Trump said he would make the decision over the next "fairly short period of time."

The finalists are current Fed Chairwoman Janet Yellen, who will meet with the president Thursday; Fed governor Jerome Powell; former Fed governor Kevin Warsh; National Economic Council Director Gary Cohn; and Stanford University economist John Taylor, the White House official confirmed.

After Mr. Trump interviews Ms. Yellen on Thursday, he will have met and discussed the job with all five candidates, the official said.

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The president met late last month with Mr. Warsh and Mr. Powell, and interviewed Mr. Taylor on Wednesday.

Mr. Powell has supported the Fed's strategy of gradually raising short-term interest rates, while Messrs. Warsh and Taylor both have criticized the central bank's easy-money policies since the financial crisis.

Ms. Yellen's four-year term as chairwoman expires in early February. If she isn't nominated for a second term, it would be the first time in nearly four decades that a first-term president has replaced the sitting Fed chief.

Mr. Trump criticized her on the campaign trail, but told The Wall Street Journal in July he was considering her.

"I think she's done a good job," Mr. Trump said in the July interview. "I'd like to see rates stay low. She's historically been a low-interest-rate person."

Mr. Cohn's prospects have fluctuated over the past few months.

In an interview with The Wall Street Journal in July, the president said he was also considering Mr. Cohn for the Fed chairmanship. But early last month, people familiar with Mr. Trump's thinking said that he was unlikely to nominate Mr. Cohn. Still, he has remained in the running.

Write to Peter Nicholas at peter.nicholas@wsj.com and Kate Davidson at kate.davidson@wsj.com

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

October 17, 2017 15:04 ET (19:04 GMT)