Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell said the coronavirus pandemic has borne down particularly hard on the nation’s students and educators and will change how young people view the world and their place in it.
America’s schoolchildren “have been forced, sooner than most people, to consider what in life is truly important,” Mr. Powell said in the text of a speech prepared for delivery before a gathering of educators and students Tuesday. He didn’t comment on monetary policy or the economic outlook in his prepared remarks.
With the experience gained in the pandemic, “I hope this will cause you to think about how you want to make your mark, knowing that things do change, and sometimes they change quickly,” Mr. Powell said. “This is an extraordinary time, and I believe that it will result in an extraordinary generation,” he added.
Mr. Powell weighed in as he and his colleagues are preparing for a pullback in the support the central bank has been offering the economy as it has navigated the shock of the coronavirus pandemic. A swift recovery in the economy and declining levels of unemployment are bringing Fed officials closer to the time when they will start paring their $120 billion a month in bond buying. A number of officials have said slowing the pace of these purchases should happen soon.
Mr. Powell is scheduled to take questions from attendees at the Tuesday event.