What will the Fed’s meeting minutes reveal?

Bob Moon Nov 24, 2010
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What will the Fed’s meeting minutes reveal?

Bob Moon Nov 24, 2010
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STEVE CHIOTAKIS: We’re gonna get the answer to some questions today when the Federal Reserve releases the details of its last meeting. When they met, the Fed pulled the trigger on a $600 billion bond-buying spree to spur even more growth in the economy. What were they thinking when they made that big decision?

Here’s Marketplace Senior Business Correspondent Bob Moon.


Bob Moon: Look for signals of the Fed’s determination. So says Georgetown professor Phillip Swagel. The former Fed economist says monetary policy-makers are under mounting criticism internationally, here at home and even inside the central bank itself.

Phillip Swagel: I would look for some discussion of how much the Fed will do, and under what conditions it will do more — or it will stop.

Swagel says the record might show to what degree the Fed policy-makers considered it necessary to pour more money into the economy.

Swagel: The Fed really thinks we need more fiscal stimulus. The Congress has said no. I would say the American people voted and said no more spending, and so the Fed is doing it for us. They won’t put that in the minutes, but that is the clear subtext.

And Swagel doubts the Fed will be so bold the next time it meets.

Swagel: I think the outside criticism will make the Fed somewhat more hesitant to take extraordinary action.

Some Republican lawmakers say Congress and the president should decide fiscal policy. They’re pushing to weaken the Fed’s authority.

I’m Bob Moon for Marketplace.

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