There is a flurry of anticipation over the release of the latest Fed minutes on Wednesday. They’re from last month’s meeting, when the Fed decided to finally raise interest rates.
The minutes, though they’re just a synopsis of the two-day meeting, are real page-turners for people like Andrew Levin,.
“The minutes are a work of art in some way,” said Levin, a former Fed economist who’s now an economist at Dartmouth College.
Levin will be looking for a discussion of a plan B in the Fed minutes — a plan in case the economy stalls.
“So that if we did have an economic slowdown this year, they would have a contingency plan ready to roll out,” he said.
Karissa McDonough, the fixed income strategist for People’s United Bank Wealth Management, is looking for specific words in the minutes.
“’Gradual’ is a big one,” she said.
McDonough wants to know how gradually the Fed will raise interest rates. She also wants to see who’s in charge — hawks, who are pushing hard for interest rate hikes, or the more cautious doves.
“It’s not so clear, kind of, which camp is driving the bus,” she said.
And this isn’t just idle speculation for McDonough. She helps manage a portfolio of about $5.5 billion.