The chair of the Federal Reserve and the Treasury secretary are testifying before the House Financial Services committee Wednesday, their second appearance on Capitol Hill this week.
In testimony on Tuesday, before the Senate Banking Committee, they painted starkly different visions of the challenges facing the United States economy in the months ahead, further exposing a rift that began to show last month.
Jerome H. Powell, the Fed Chair, pointed to ongoing uncertainty over vaccine speed and distribution, the economic dangers of a surge in virus cases, and the grim reality that many remain out of work. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin’s testimony painted a sunnier image of the economic recovery, emphasizing state and local lockdowns as the main threat to growth.
The contrast underlines the divide between two economic policymakers who, earlier in the crisis, worked closely as partners to usher in a sweeping economic response.