Harvard University professor Jeremy Stein earned $198,500 giving speeches and consulting for financial institutions prior to his nomination to the Federal Reserve’s Board of Governors.
Stein, a professor with expertise in banking and finance, received earned speaking fees of $35,000 from Deutsche Bank AG, $20,000 from State Street Corp. and $25,000 from Bank of America-Merrill Lynch in 2010 and 2011, according to his financial disclosure with the Office of Government Ethics. He also was paid $100,000 for a consulting report for the Clearing House Corporation, a group of the nation’s largest commercial banks.
President Barack Obama last month announced the nominations of Stein and Jerome Powell, an attorney who was a Treasury undersecretary for President George H.W. Bush, to fill two vacancies on the Fed’s board in November.
No hearing has been scheduled in Congress for the nominees. Republican minority leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky said that Obama’s decision to use a recess appointment to install the new director of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau “threatens the confirmation process.”
Also in limbo are nominees for other bank regulator jobs: Martin J. Gruenberg as head of the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp.; Thomas Hoenig, the FDIC’s nominee for vice-chairman; and Thomas J. Curry, Obama’s nominee to be the comptroller of the currency. All three were approved by the Senate Banking Committee with bipartisan support and are awaiting final confirmation by the full chamber.
According to his financial disclosures, Stein has between $3 million and $6.3 million in assets, with most of that in accounts with asset managers Vanguard Group Inc., TIAA-CREF and Fidelity Investments. The federal forms require officials to report only a range in the value of holdings. Primary residences are excluded.
Stein didn’t respond to a telephone message and an e-mail seeking comment.
Stein served in the Obama administration from February to July of 2009 as a senior adviser to U.S. Treasury Secretary Timothy F. Geithner and as a staff economist on the White House’s National Economic Council.
Obama’s most recent pick for a seat on the Fed, Nobel prize-winning economist Peter Diamond, withdrew his nomination in June of 2011 in the face of Republican opposition.
Diamond’s nomination ran into opposition from Senator Richard Shelby of Alabama, the senior Republican on the Senate Banking Committee. Shelby said Diamond, a professor at Massachusetts Institute of Technology, lacked the practical qualifications for the Fed job and experience regulating banks and managing financial crises.
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