Top White House Economist Goolsbee to Step Down

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By Alister Bull and Caren Bohan

WASHINGTON -- Top White House economist Austan Goolsbee said on Monday he was stepping down, marking the exit of one of President Barack Obama's top aides at a time when new signs of weakness have emerged in the economy.

Less than a year after he was named chairman of the White House Council of Economic Advisers, Goolsbee plans to return to his teaching job at the University of Chicago, the Obama administration said in a statement. He will be back in Chicago in time for the start of the next school year.