Here's Obama's pick for one of DC's worst jobs
Jack Lew will lead the Obama administration's talks with Congress over spending. It's a tough road, even for this veteran technocrat.
What Lew is supposed to do is find ways to keep the federal government operating as Republicans in the House of Representatives threaten to shut the government down if they don't get their way on spending.
Lew is a veteran technocrat in Washington. He began his career as a top aide to the late Tip O'Neill. So, yes, he is a liberal. He later worked for Bill Clinton as budget director and was tapped for the job by Barack Obama.
Educated at Harvard and Georgetown Law School, Lew, 57, is fastidious and low-key. The Queens native eats lunch at his desk -- a cheese sandwich and an apple that he brings from home. A devout Orthodox Jew, he leaves the office before sundown on Friday to honor the sabbath.
He is also a tough power broker. And, as important, he knows all the budget numbers in detail and doesn't hesitate to use that knowledge if it's needed.
Geithner was made Treasury Secretary in part to soothe a Wall Street wary of a new Democratic administration. Geithner had been president of the Federal Reserve Bank of New York. Geithner was skilled in dealing with central bankers and heads of state on international financial matters.
That experience is not in Lew's skill set, but he did work for Citigroup (C) for three years before joining the Obama administration.
Lew is likely to be questioned closely by Senate Republicans in confirmation hearings. But Republicans have not signaled the kind of opposition they have put up to some of the president's other potential nominations, such as former Nebraska Sen. Chuck Hagel, the nominee to succeed Leon Panetta as Secretary Defense.
Geithner's tenure was marked by stormy relations with Republicans and Democrats. Both loathed him because he made stabilizing the financial system and the biggest banks a priority. Many believe Wall Street got a pass from Geithner because none of the biggest banks were allowed to fail.
On the other hand, since the 19 biggest financial institutions were subjected to so-called stress tests to see how vulnerable they would be to financial shocks, they've seen huge gains in stock prices.
More on Money Now
Copyright © 2014 Microsoft. All rights reserved.
Fundamental company data and historical chart data provided by Morningstar Inc. Real-time index quotes and delayed quotes supplied by Morningstar Inc. Quotes delayed by up to 15 minutes, except where indicated otherwise. Fund summary, fund performance and dividend data provided by Morningstar Inc. Analyst recommendations provided by Zacks Investment Research. StockScouter data provided by Verus Analytics. IPO data provided by Hoover's Inc. Index membership data provided by Morningstar Inc.
[BRIEFING.COM] Equity indices strung together a daylong rally on Tuesday, giving the S&P 500 its sixth consecutive advance. Some selling during the final hour of action pressured the indices from their highs, but they still ended with the bulk of their gains. The benchmark index added 0.4% with eight sectors finishing in the green, while the Nasdaq (+1.0%) outperformed throughout the session.
Although the stock market began the day on a flat note, the major averages quickly took the ... More
More Market News
As the market wades through what many people hope is a sixth bull year, some have grown nervous about how long the run can go.
MUST-SEE ON MSN
- Video: Easy DIY smoked meats at home
A charcuterie master shares his process for cold-smoking meat at home.
- Jetpacks about to go mainstream
- Weird things covered by home insurance
- Bing: 70 percent of adults report 'digital eye strain'