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March 18, 2013

To Reassure Investors, Fed Stresses It Will Not End Stimulus

Each time in recent years that the Federal Reserve has paused in its efforts to stimulate the economy, it has come to regret the decision as premature. Its leading officials say the recovery has been slower as a consequence of those pauses. It is a mistake they do not want to repeat.

When the Fed’s policy-making committee meets on Tuesday and Wednesday, its members are likely to spend a lot of time talking about the potential costs of the current stimulus campaign. Then the Fed’s chairman, Ben S. Bernanke, will probably seek to reassure investors that the Fed plans to press on.

The central bank is buying $85 billion a month in Treasury and mortgage-backed securities because it wants unemployment to fall more quickly. While recent economic data suggests that growth is quickening, Mr. Bernanke has said that the situation remains unacceptable and that the pace of progress is uncertain.

Mr. Bernanke and the Fed’s vice chairwoman, Janet L. Yellen, “have been abundantly clear in recent commentary that the improvement in the labor market to date falls far short of what they will need to see before reducing monetary policy accommodation,” Joseph LaVorgna, chief United States economist at Deutsche Bank, wrote last week in a note to clients.”


Read full New York Times article here

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