Jonathan's Feed
Mar 7, 2014

Fed’s Dudley flags easy money now, rate rise around mid-2015

NEW YORK (Reuters) – The Federal Reserve is not about to back off its highly accommodative policy, though investor predictions of a rate rise by midway through next year are reasonable, an influential U.S. central banker said on Friday.

New York Fed President William Dudley outlined some bright spots in the long U.S. recovery from recession, calling U.S. economic prospects “reasonably favorable.”

Mar 7, 2014

Improving U.S. economy not enough for Fed to back off -Dudley

NEW YORK, March 7 (Reuters) – The U.S. economy’s “reasonably
favorable” prospects are not yet good enough for the Federal
Reserve to stop providing highly accommodative monetary policy,
an influential U.S. central banker said on Friday.

New York Fed President William Dudley outlined some bright
spots in the long U.S. recovery from recession. But he stressed
that the labor market is still hobbled, saying in a speech he
would like to see faster economic growth and more rapid progress
in lowering unemployment and raising inflation.

Mar 6, 2014

Fed should be patient, keep trimming U.S. stimulus: Lockhart

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – It could be another two months before the U.S. Federal Reserve can determine whether recent weak economic data is truly weather-related or something more permanent, so policymakers should keep trimming their bond-buying stimulus, a top Fed official said on Thursday.

In an interview, Atlanta Fed President Dennis Lockhart said flatly that the central bank should keep reducing its policy accommodation even if the February jobs report on Friday falls short of expectations, making for three straight months of sub-par hiring in the world’s largest economy.

Mar 6, 2014

Fed officials see high hurdle for changing course on QE taper

WASHINGTON/NEW YORK/LONDON (Reuters) – The U.S. economic outlook would have to change dramatically for the Federal Reserve to alter the pace at which it is winding down its massive bond-buying program, three top U.S. central bankers said on Thursday.

And one, Atlanta Fed President Dennis Lockhart, told Reuters in an interview that even a third month of below-par U.S. jobs growth would not be enough to warrant such a move.

Mar 6, 2014

Fed should keep paring stimulus even if jobs growth weak: Lockhart

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The Federal Reserve should continue to pare its massive bond-buying program even if a key jobs report due out on Friday falls short of expectations, a top Fed official said on Thursday.

“In my mind, unless we really fall off track in the economy pretty dramatically, I think the tapering program should proceed,” Atlanta Federal Reserve Bank President Dennis Lockhart told Reuters in an interview, adding that he has “modest” expectations for the Labor Department’s nonfarm payrolls report.

Mar 5, 2014

Yellen commits Fed to boost still-weak U.S. economy

NEW YORK (Reuters) – Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen vowed on Wednesday to do all that she can to boost a U.S. economy that is running well short of the central bank’s objectives.

“The economy continues to operate considerably short of these objectives” of maximum employment and stable prices, Yellen said according to prepared remarks at a swearing-in ceremony at the central bank in Washington.

Mar 5, 2014

Bernanke enjoys ‘fruits of free market’ with first post-Fed speech

NEW YORK/ABU DHABI (Reuters) – Ben Bernanke earned more in 40 minutes on Tuesday than he made all of last year as head of the U.S. Federal Reserve.

Bernanke was paid at least $250,000 for his first public speaking engagement, in Abu Dhabi, since stepping down in January, according to sources familiar with the matter. That compares to his 2013 paycheck of $199,700, and the appearance was only the first of three around the world this week.

Mar 4, 2014

Fed official: U.S. economic risks from Ukraine seem manageable

NEW YORK (Reuters) – A top Federal Reserve official said on Tuesday he is closely following the crisis in Ukraine for potential effects on U.S. economic growth and volatility in commodity prices, but said that so far he sees no undue risks.

“It’s something I’m watching really carefully for potential implications for growth,” Jeffrey Lacker, president of the Richmond Fed, told the Council of Economic Education. “We obviously worry first about the disruptions of the commodity markets … and volatile commodity prices.”

Feb 28, 2014

Economists warn of more market ‘tantrums’ as U.S. Fed tightens

NEW YORK (Reuters) – The market turbulence of last year’s “taper tantrum” is likely to return when the Federal Reserve decides to raise interest rates, some top U.S. economists concluded in a research paper that warns that more policy stimulus today can spark bigger disruptions in the future.

The paper, published on Friday, focused on the May-June taper tantrum, when then Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke’s talk of less stimulus sparked a market drop, as well as on this year’s sell-off in emerging markets. It argues that investors in mutual funds, though unleveraged relative to more tightly regulated banks, can destabilize things when they rush to sell.

Feb 28, 2014

Weather seems to blame for U.S. slowdown, Fed’s Yellen says

By Jonathan Spicer and Krista Hughes

(Reuters) – Unusually harsh winter weather appears to be behind recent signs of weakness in the U.S. economy, Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen said on Thursday, suggesting the central bank was poised to press forward in ratcheting back its stimulus.

Testifying to the Senate Banking Committee, Yellen said the Fed would watch carefully to ensure weather was indeed the culprit, but she reiterated that it would take a “significant change” to the economy’s prospects for the Fed to put plans to wind down its bond-buying program on hold.