The Many Faces of Ben Bernanke

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By necessity, the chairman of the Federal Reserve must be tight-lipped, as the slightest word from a Fed chief can roil markets. Bernanke got a hard lesson in this fact shortly after he became chairman in February 2006, when at that spring's Washington Correspondents' Association Dinner he conversed informally with CNBC host Maria Bartiromo about interest rate policy. After Bartiromo reported his remarks, stock markets tumbled. "In the future, my communications with the public and with the markets will be entirely through regular and formal channels," he told the Senate Banking Committee shortly thereafter.

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