Senate backs Fischer for Fed board

Stanley Fischer, the former chief of the Bank of Israel, testifies before the Senate Banking Committee confirmation hearing on his nomination in WashingtonBy Howard Schneider and Richard Cowan WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The U.S. Senate on Wednesday approved Stanley Fischer’s nomination to the Federal Reserve Board of Governors, adding a potentially influential voice to the developing debate over Fed policy in the post-crisis era. Fischer, 70, was approved on a 68-27 vote, with all the opposition coming from Republicans. The Senate could have considered both nominations back-to-back, but Republicans blocked the more rapid procedure to protest a rules change that allows Democrats to more easily move President Barack Obama’s nominees, according to a Senate Democratic aide. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid likely will move this week to set a vote on Fischer’s vice chairmanship for when the Senate returns from its Memorial Day recess the week of June 1.

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