Busy week of Fed speak

October 17, 2011

Will they or won’t they (ease monetary policy further)? The question will again garner investors’ attention this week as Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke and a number of regional Fed bank presidents take to the podium. The speeches come against a backdrop of ongoing worries about economic growth, but on the heels of a number of releases that were not as bad as feared. The bar remains high for the Fed to actively engage in a third round of quantitative easing or QE3 — it would probably take renewed deflationary rumblings to get there.

For now, the Fed is likely to focus on less drastic steps, such as new ways of communicating its policy targets, to satiate wobbly financial markets’ apparent need for ongoing monetary support. Here is the line-up of speakers for this week:

Bernanke will deliver remarks on ”The Effects of the Great Recession on Central Bank Doctrine and Practice” at the Boston Fed on Tuesday at 1: 15 pm EDT.

Monday: Chicago Fed President Charles Evans will speak on “U.S. Monetary Policy and Economic Outlook” before the Michigan Council on Economic Education at 1:15 pm EDT. Jeffrey Lacker of the Richmond Fed also give a talk on the outlook, speaking at 7:30 pm EDT an event sponsored by the Salisbury-Wicomico Economic Development.

Tuesday: Atlanta Fed President Dennis Lockhart will give remarks on the economy before the Chartered Financial Analyst Society of East Tennessee in Chattanooga at .

Wednesday: The Fed releases its monthly Beige Book, a collection of anecdotal data on economic conditions around its 12 districts.

Thursday: Fed Board Governor Daniel Tarullo speaks on “Unemployment, the Labor Market, and the Economy” at the Columbia University World Leaders Forum in New York at 6 pm EDT. Cleveland Fed President Sandra Pianalto speaks at a manufacturing conference in Toledo, Ohio.

Friday: Minneapolis Fed President Narayana Kocherlakota will give a speech to the Harvard Club of Minnesota at noon CDT.

Don’t know about you, but I’m exhausted already.

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