When Alan Greenspan speaks, people usually listen.

But not in Cambridge, Mass., last week when a small group of Harvard University students walked out on the Federal Reserve Board chairman during his commencement address to the class of 1999.

According to Friday's Washington Post, the students walked because they viewed Mr. Greenspan's invitation to speak as a confirmation of "Harvard's reputation as a pre-professional breeding ground for financiers."

Some of the offended students wore green ribbons as a promise to pursue socially responsible careers.

Others mocked the chairman by pasting stickers on their caps that read "Leaders Not Bankers" and "I Bank, Therefore I Am?"

Still, those students may have been pleasantly surprised by Mr. Greenspan's comments. Instead of talking about interest rates or the stock market, the chairman told students that the nation's success will depend on "integrity and other qualities of character that you and your contemporaries will continue to develop."

Besides, he added, the last thing Harvard students and their parents need is investment advice.

"Those of you who in recent years have been paying Harvard tuition or have contributed to the endowment fund must by now have little left to invest," he said.

Five months after President Clinton announced he would nominate Armando Falcon Jr. as director of the Office of Federal Housing Enterprise Oversight, the White House finally sent the paperwork to the Senate last week.

Mr. Falcon is already working at the agency as a consultant while Mark Kinsey is the acting director. Mr. Falcon's nomination could be pending for a while, because Sen. James M. Inhofe is threatening to block all civilian nominations.

The Oklahoma Republican is protesting President Clinton's recess appointment of James C. Hormel, a gay businessman, as ambassador to Luxembourg.

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