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June 26, 2013

A Hawkish Signal Bernanke Didn't Send

“The markets have misread Ben Bernanke.

“The Federal Reserve chairman’s news conference a week ago was widely seen as a signal that the Fed is preparing to wean the economy off easy money, perhaps sooner than many anticipated.

“Global stock markets plunged. The bond market pushed yields on 10-year U.S. Treasury notes close to 2.6%, higher than they’ve been since August 2011. Rates on 30-year fixed-rate mortgages leapt, hitting 4.6% this week, up from 4.1% the week before, according to HSH Associates. Futures markets are betting the Fed might lift short-term rates from zero as soon as mid-2014.

“That is neither what Mr. Bernanke expected nor what he meant. “There is no change in policy here,” he said at the news conference.”

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Read full Wall Street Journal article here

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