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Bloomberg: Bernanke signals need for further stimulus

Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke has signaled additional monetary stimulus may be needed to lower US unemployment as policy makers projected little acceleration in growth after last quarter’s pickup, according to Bloomberg news website. 

Source:
Date:
Updated:
Bloomberg
Friday, November 4, 2011
Friday, November 4, 2011

Bloomberg
Nov. 3/11 (Bloomberg) – Federal Reserve Chairman Ben S. Bernanke signaled additional monetary stimulus may be needed to lower U.S. unemployment as policy makers projected little acceleration in growth after last quarter’s pickup.

Potential actions are “on the table,” including a third round of securities purchases, extending the period of record- low interest rates or being more specific about when rates would rise, Bernanke said at a press conference yesterday after officials met for two days in Washington. Stocks added to gains while the dollar weakened against the euro.

Bernanke warned that economic improvement will probably be “frustratingly slow,” with policy makers forecasting a 1 percentage-point drop in the jobless rate to about 8 percent over two years. The chairman said buying mortgage bonds is a “viable option,” comments that give the idea an “extra push” and increase already-high odds of the move, said Neal Soss, chief economist at Credit Suisse in New York.

“He repeatedly referred to his disappointment with his best judgment about the economy’s prospects,” said Soss, who was an aide to former Fed Chairman Paul Volcker. “If you’re unsatisfied, and you’ve got some tool that might help, in due course you’re supposed to use it.”

Additional easing may occur by February and could coincide with possible actions by new European Central Bank President Mario Draghi to contain fallout from the continent’s sovereign- debt crisis, Soss said.

This is an excerpt from Bloomberg as it appeared on November 4, 2011. For updates or to read the current version of this post in its entirety, please click here.

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