WASHINGTON (AP) - Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke heads to Capitol Hill Wednesday with a forecast of some sunshine and a few clouds.
The sunny side is the economic recovery is taking hold. The cloud on the horizon is the recovery won't be strong enough to quickly drive down unemployment.
Bernanke is likely to warn again that the pace of the recovery will be sluggish because Americans still face formidable obstacles.
They include high unemployment, stagnant wages, weak home values, rising foreclosures and hard-to-get credit.
Bernanke faces the daunting task of making sure the recovery lasts after massive government stimulus fades later this year.
To foster the recovery, officials have repeatedly pledged to hold interest rates at record lows for an "extended period."
Bernanke will offer his assessment to the Joint Economic Committee.