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Powell testifies before Congress in September. (Photo: Drew Angerer/Pool/AFP via Getty Images)

There's a risk the U.S. economy is in for a "longer than expected slog back to full recovery," Fed chairman Jerome Powell said at the National Association for Business Economics' virtual conference on Tuesday.

Why it matters: There was a sharp rebound when the economy reopened from the pandemic shutdown, but there are signs the bounce back is petering out. Powell said there's little risk of "overdoing" economic support, a nod to Congress — which it is at a stalemate over additional stimulus.

What he's saying: "Even if policy actions ultimately prove to be greater than needed, they will not go to waste," Powell said.

  • "The recovery will be stronger and move faster if monetary policy and fiscal policy continue to work side by side to provide support to the economy until it is clearly out of the woods."

Go deeper

Dion Rabouin, author of Markets
Jan 7, 2021 - Economy & Business

Job losses suggest labor market's "dark days" could return

Data: Investing.com; Chart: Axios Visuals

The ADP private payrolls report showed U.S. employers cut 123,000 non-government jobs in December, the first net job loss since April.

Why it matters: There are still 10 million more unemployed Americans than there were in February and the report suggests a weak job climate could persist, despite recent relief efforts from Congress.

Updated 18 mins ago - Politics & Policy

Gavin Newsom to face recall election

Photo: Jay L. Clendenin / Getty Images

Gov. Gavin Newsom (D) will face a recall election later this year, California's Secretary of State confirmed Wednesday.

Why it matters: This will be the second time in California's history that a gubernatorial recall campaign has succeeded in getting on the ballot, out of a total of 55 attempts, per Bloomberg.

America's child care sticker shock

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

Parents looking to return to the job market may find child care options have gotten pricier — and that's if they can enroll their kids at all.

Why it matters: The fate of the recovery partially relies on the return of parents who left the workforce to care for their children.