WASHINGTON (AP) -- Ben Bernanke is urging lawmakers to balance their desire to cut deficits with policies that could help boost the weak economy in the short run.
The Federal Reserve chairman is testifying before the House Budget Committee a week after the Fed signaled that a full recovery could take at least three more years. As a result, the Fed said it doesn't plan to raise its benchmark interest rate from a record low before late 2014 at the earliest.
Bernanke is also appearing two days after the Congressional Budget Office estimated that the deficit will top $1 trillion for a fourth straight year and could stay around that level for years.
Bernanke says he recognizes that huge budget deficits represent a serious threat to the economy.