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Economics

How Stanley Fischer Became a Central-Banking Legend

Stanley Fischer at the Asia-Global Dialogue conference in Hong Kong, on Dec. 5
Stanley Fischer at the Asia-Global Dialogue conference in Hong Kong, on Dec. 5Photograph by Jerome Favre/Bloomberg

Stanley Fischer may be the best-connected central banker in the world and among the most admired. Now he’s the leading candidate to become vice chairman of the Federal Reserve, according to people familiar with the selection process who spoke with Bloomberg.

Fischer, 70, served eight years as chief of the Bank of Israel and helped the small, open economy come through the global financial crisis with minimal damage. Afterward, with housing prices rising, Fischer pivoted to regulation aimed at preventing the kind of asset bubbles that blew up disastrously in the U.S. In an earlier stint in Israel in the 1980s he helped quell a bout of hyperinflation. In the 1990s he battled emerging-market crises as first deputy managing director of the International Monetary Fund.