December 17, 2009 / 4:29 PM / 10 years ago

Senate panel approves Bernanke nomination

Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke testifies on Capitol Hill, July 22, 2009. REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The Senate Banking Committee on Thursday approved the nomination of Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke for a second term, sending it to the full Senate for a final confirming vote.

The panel vote was 16 to 7 to back the nomination.

The Senate is not expected to take up the nomination until some time in January. While approval is widely expected, Bernanke faces an unusual amount of opposition from lawmakers who are disgruntled over the Fed’s bailout of financial firms.

Bernanke’s current four-year term as Fed chairman expires on January 31.

Reporting by Mark Felsenthal; Editing by Andrea Ricci and Chizu Nomiyama

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