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Chair Jerome H. Powell
Testimony on the Federal Reserve’s Response to the Coronavirus Pandemic
June 2021
(“The economic downturn has not fallen equally on all Americans, and those least able to shoulder the burden have been the hardest hit. In particular, despite progress, joblessness continues to fall disproportionately on lower-wage workers in the service sector and on African Americans and Hispanics. The Fed pursues monetary policy aimed at fostering a strong, stable economy that can improve economic outcomes for all Americans. Those who have historically been left behind stand the best chance of prospering in a strong economy with plentiful job opportunities. And our economy will be stronger and perform better when everyone can contribute to, and share in, the benefits of prosperity.”)

Vice Chair for Supervision Randal K. Quarles
Supervision and Regulation Testimony
May 2021
(“The COVID event is not behind us, and the vulnerabilities it exposed are not gone. As we continue to recover, the 'vast influence of accident' can only grow, with consequences that can disproportionately fall on the most vulnerable. However, we can do more than just wait and hope that the path out of the COVID event is smooth. We can work to ensure the financial system is resilient enough to support consumers, households, and businesses, and we can recommit ourselves to supporting the economy through the completion of the recovery. The work we undertake to learn the lessons of the past year is a critical step in upholding that commitment.”)

Chair Jerome H. Powell
CARES Act Testimony
March 2021
("The recovery has progressed more quickly than generally expected and looks to be strengthening. This is due in significant part to the unprecedented fiscal and monetary policy actions I mentioned, which provided essential support to households, businesses, and communities.

However, the sectors of the economy most adversely affected by the resurgence of the virus, and by greater social distancing, remain weak, and the unemployment rate—still elevated at 6.2 percent—underestimates the shortfall, particularly as labor market participation remains notably below pre-pandemic levels.

We welcome this progress, but will not lose sight of the millions of Americans who are still hurting, including lower-wage workers in the services sector, African Americans, Hispanics, and other minority groups that have been especially hard hit.")

Chair Jerome H. Powell
Semiannual Monetary Policy Report to the Congress
February 2021
("The unemployment rate remained elevated at 6.3 percent in January, and participation in the labor market is notably below pre-pandemic levels. Although there has been much progress in the labor market since the spring, millions of Americans remain out of work. As discussed in the February Monetary Policy Report, the economic downturn has not fallen equally on all Americans, and those least able to shoulder the burden have been the hardest hit. In particular, the high level of joblessness has been especially severe for lower-wage workers and for African Americans, Hispanics, and other minority groups.")

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Last Update: July 13, 2021