N.Y. Fed narrows Dudley successor search to 'handful' of people

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Directors at the Federal Reserve Bank of New York said they had narrowed their search for the bank's next president to a "handful of final candidates," without naming any of those still in the running or the timetable for announcing their selection.

The district bank's board is seeking a successor to William Dudley, who has said he will retire in mid-2018. The president of the New York Fed is a permanent voter on the rate-setting Federal Open Market Committee, a key regulator of Wall Street, and one of the three most influential U.S. central bankers.

"We have had a great deal of interest from a deep pool of candidates for the position," Sara Horowitz and Glenn Hutchins, co-chairs of the search committee, said in a statement Friday. "Interest has come from many quarters, representing not just demographic and gender diversity but also diversity of experiences and perspectives."

The New York Fed has come under unusual public pressure from Democratic lawmakers and liberal activist groups to consider a diverse slate of candidates. The backlash follows a series of appointments to other regional Fed banks that have provoked criticism for their lack of transparency and limited diversity.

While members of the Fed's Washington-based board of governors are appointed by the president and confirmed by the U.S. Senate, the 12 regional bank heads are chosen by non-banking directors of their respective boards. That choice is then subject to approval by Fed governors.

The New York Fed statement provided a long list of qualifications sought by the search committee, including crisis-management expertise and a deep understanding of the U.S. and world economies.

The statement also said directors had "modified the key attributes in the job description several times to clarify or add an important skill or area of expertise, including an understanding of the 'plumbing' of the banking system, the international role of the New York Fed, the new economy and labor markets."

Bloomberg News