The Latest: Yellen defends tougher bank regulation

By MARTIN CRUTSINGER

WASHINGTON (AP) — The latest on Federal Reserve Janet Yellen's testimony to Congress' Joint Economic Committee (all times Eastern):

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11:20 a.m.

Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen, staking out a position in opposition to the incoming Trump administration, gives a strong defense of the Dodd-Frank Act. That's the 2010 legislation that increased regulations on the financial system in an effort to prevent a repeat of the 2008 financial crisis.

Yellen tells Congress' Joint Economic Committee that after the country lived through a "devastating financial crisis," there was a need to put into place safeguards that would make the financial system safer. She says, "I would not want to see the clock turned back on all the improvements we have made."

During the campaign, President-elect Donald Trump was highly critical of the Dodd-Frank law, arguing that it imposed too many burdens on the nation's financial system and was making it harder for people to get credit. Republicans in Congress have been trying for a number of years to repeal the Dodd-Frank Act and replace it with a less stringent regulatory regime.

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10:40 a.m.

Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen indicates in testimony before Congress Thursday that the central bank remains on track to boost interest rates.

She tells the Joint Economic Committee that the reports that have come out since the Fed met in early November show the economy is "making good progress" toward the goals the Fed has said it wanted to see before it raised rates again.

She agrees that there had been significant moves in the markets since the election of Republican Donald Trump as president, including a rise in long-term bond yields. She says she interprets that as an expectation among investors that the federal government's deficit could increase based on Trump's budget and tax plans.

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