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Fed chair Janet Yellen seemingly suffers mini-stroke attack with U.S. economy on life support

Janet Yellen

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(NaturalNews) What in the world happened to Federal Reserve Chairwoman Janet Yellen during a recent speech at the University of Massachusetts at Amherst? Some in the audience, and many who have seen this video, believe that Yellen might have suffered a transient ischemic attack (TIA), which is often referred to as a "mini-stroke."

Click here to watch for yourself. You can clearly see that as the video begins, Yellen appears fine and is speaking deliberately but normally. Suddenly, however, she stops speaking and continues to stare blankly downward, presumably at the speech she is reading.

Several seconds of "dead air" follow in which she doesn't say a word. Eventually, she haltingly begins speaking again, only to once more go quiet and stare blankly.

In the process of these two episodes, the camera angle changes from a relative close-up to a much longer, wider view of the auditorium, which is dark, making it impossible to see Yellen's blank expression. At one point, someone in the front row is seen quickly getting up and heading off-camera, perhaps towards the stage entrance.

Again, Yellen begins speaking, stammering somewhat and blurring some words.


According to this description, the signs of a stroke/mini-stroke can include:

  • Sudden numbness or weakness of the face, arm, or leg, especially on one side of the body;
  • Sudden confusion, trouble speaking or understanding;
  • Sudden trouble seeing in one or both eyes;
  • Sudden trouble walking, dizziness, loss of balance or coordination;
  • Sudden, severe headache with no known cause.

As you can see in the video, Yellen definitely exhibited some of these signs and symptoms during her speech.

Of course, the Fed has downplayed what happened at U of Mass. As reported by MassLive:

A spokesman for the university said the 69-year-old was fine after being checked out by EMTs and was to continue her schedule which included a faculty dinner at the home of Chancellor Kumble Subbaswamy.

A spokesman for the Federal Reserve Board said, "Chair Yellen felt dehydrated at the end of a long speech under bright lights. As a precaution, she was seen by EMT staff on-site at U-Mass Amherst." He confirmed that she planned to continue with her schedule.

Carrying the world's economic health on her shoulders

What the video does not show is that shortly after Yellen's long pauses and stumbling speech, she finally said, "I think I'll stop here," and was then seen by paramedical personnel on the scene. She was checked out in a nearby waiting room.

Yellen's health is obviously a concern because she alone determines U.S. monetary policy. Honestly, right now, the U.S. economy is not the best it's ever been.

It wouldn't be unprecedented for a major public figure to have suffered some sort of legitimate medical problem and elect not to be immediately treated for it so as not to raise questions of competency. That seems likely in this case.

This will matter in the coming weeks and months as Yellen, who is 69, ponders whether to finally raise interest rates from where they've been since the near collapse of 2008-2009: zero.

Here's what a few others have said about Yellen's apparent health issue:

Business Insider: "Near the end of her prepared remarks, Yellen appeared to be experiencing some physical discomfort. She paused several times to cough before saying she would stop."

Zero Hedge: "Bloomberg reports, Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen is resuming her planned schedule after feeling unwell toward the end of a speech she was giving Thursday at the University of Massachusetts at Amherst, Fed spokeswoman Michelle Smith said in an e-mailed statement."

"It is hardly surprising given that she now carries the weight of the world's economic and market strength on her shoulders."

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