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It was Yellen's second major address in as many days, and came amid a flurry of speeches on rate guidance from other Fed officials.
U.S. manufacturing output rose for a second straight month in March, a sign of recovery from a long winter.
President Barack Obama and Vice President Joe Biden are hitting the road to trumpet $600 million in new competitive grants to spur job creation.
The Fed should try to make communications on the expected path of rates and the economy consistent with policy statements, a top official said.
U.S. housing starts rose less than expected in March and building permits fell, pointing to underlying weakness in the market.
Applications for U.S. home mortgages rose last week as interest rates declined, an industry group said on Wednesday.
First quarter economic growth in Russia slowed and Moscow's economy minister is attributing it to uncertainty over the Ukraine crisis.
China's latest reading on growth has sparked a disagreement between two investment titans viewed as authorities on the world's second-largest economy.
China's first quarter GDP numbers have quelled the worst fears of a hard landing, with economists forecasting a growth pickup over the coming months.
U.S. consumer prices rose in March but inflation remained generally benign, which should give the Fed scope to keep interest rates low.
Confidence among home builders in the market for new, single-family homes remained in a holding pattern in April, ticking up just one point.
U.S. business inventories rose a bit less than expected as sales rebounded, suggesting a slow pace of restocking could weigh on economic growth in the first quarter.
U.S. retail sales recorded their largest gain in 1-1/2 years in March, the latest sign the economy was emerging from a freezing winter.
U.S. consumer sentiment rose in April to its highest in nine months as both current conditions and expectations brightened, a survey released on Friday showed.
U.S. producer prices recorded their largest increase in nine months in March as food and services costs spiked.
The bond market does not appear to setting off major alarm bells, David Joy, chief market strategist of Ameriprise Financial, told CNBC on Friday.
The number new jobless claims plunged to their lowest in nearly 7 years, which may bolster hopes of a growth surge after a cold winter.
Russia's central bank has confirmed that some $64 billion in assets held by Russians headed for the exits in the first quarter.
Treasury Secretary Jack Lew told CNBC that the U.S. is leading the global economic recovery, despite still having "a lot of work to do."
The rate at which Americans are starting new businesses declined last year, suggesting more are finding jobs instead, according to Kauffman data.