Romney says he would replace Bernanke
Romney says he would replace Bernanke

Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney says he would replace Federal Reserve chairman Ben Bernanke if he wins election to the White House in November.

Mr Romney told Fox Business television that he wanted someone to lead the US central bank who is more in tune with his own economic thinking.

"I would like to select ... a new person to that chairman's position, someone who shared my economic views, someone that I thought was sympathetic to the needs of our nation," Mr Romney told the broadcaster.

"And I want to make sure that the Federal Reserve focuses on maintaining the monetary stability that leads to a strong dollar, and confidence that America is not going to go down the road that other nations have gone down to their peril," he said.

Mr Bernanke has been chairman of the Fed since February 2006, named by Republican president George W Bush for a four-year term and approved by the US Senate.

After leading the Fed through the US financial crisis and deep 2008-2009 recession, he was renewed as chairman by Democratic President Barack Obama in February 2010, again earning easy Senate confirmation.

Mr Obama has been supportive of the Fed maintaining its benchmark interest rate at near-zero levels to help get the economy going, but some Republican politicians have said that that has not produced results while leaving the economy vulnerable to a return to high inflation.

It was not immediately clear if Mr Bernanke could be removed ahead of the expiration of his term if Mr Romney wins the election and assumes the presidency in January next year.

According to the Federal Reserve website, a governor of the central bank "may not be removed from office for their policy views." But nothing is said specifically about removing someone from the job of chairman, the head of the board of governors.

On Wednesday one of Mr Romney's economic advisers, Glenn Hubbard, said Mr Romney should stick with Mr Bernanke.

The West Australian

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