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Federal Reserve Appoints David Wilcox Chief U.S. Forecaster

The Federal Reserve Board appointed David Wilcox as the director of U.S. economic research, replacing David Stockton, who plans to retire on Sept. 30.

Wilcox, 52, will lead the 325 employees in the Division of Research and Statistics, which provides forecasts for the economic outlook at each meeting of the Federal Open Market Committee, according to a Fed release today in Washington. Wilcox is currently the division’s deputy director.

“David Wilcox brings many years of exemplary public service -- both at the Board and in other senior positions -- to the position of division director,” Fed Chairman Ben S. Bernanke said in a statement. “His economic interests are wide-ranging and his expertise in topics relevant to the Federal Reserve is deep,” he said.

Wilcox will become one of three top Board of Governors staff officials who brief policy makers on interest rates and U.S. and international economic developments. The other two top staff economists are William English, director of the Division of Monetary Affairs since July, and Nathan Sheets, head of the Division of International Finance since 2007.

Wilcox was a staff member at the Washington-based board of governors from 1986 to 1997, working in economic forecasting economic measurement and monetary policy formulation, the Fed said. From 1994 to 1995 he was detailed to the staff of President Bill Clinton’s Council of Economic Advisers. In 1997 he left the Fed to serve as assistant secretary for economic policy at the Treasury Department.

Deputy Director

Wilcox rejoined the Fed’s staff in 2001 as deputy director of the research division under his predecessor David Stockton. Stockton announced his retirement in May.

In addition to advising the FOMC, the research division, which includes around 100 economists with doctorates, produces statistical releases including the Industrial Production and Flow of Funds reports. It also provides research related to the Fed’s responsibilities in financial stability and bank supervision.

Wilcox earned a B.A. in mathematics at Williams College in 1980 and a Ph.D. in economics from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, the same doctoral program as Bernanke, in 1987.

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