After eight years in the trenches with "people beating the crap out of him," Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke "deserves a break," former Fed Governor Frederic Mishkin told CNBC on Tuesday.
But he added the central bank's decision on when to start tapering its bond-buying program "will not be affected" should Bernanke choose to leave at the end of his term.
In an interview that aired Monday, President Barack Obama hinted that Bernanke may be on his way out. "Ben Bernanke's done an outstanding job," the president said in the interview with Charlie Rose.
But when asked whether he would reappoint Bernanke if the Fed chief wanted to keep the job, Obama did not answer directly. "He's already stayed a lot longer than he wanted."
Any changing of the guard at the Fed would come at a complex time for policymakers who are grappling with deciding on when to scale back the central bank's $85 billion-a-month asset purchases known as quantitative easing. Investors are hoping for some answers when Bernanke holds a news conference on Wednesday afternoon, following the Fed's two-day meeting, which began on Tuesday.
(Read More: Why Some Traders View Fed Tapering as Tightening)