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April FOMC Minutes: Fed To Raise Rates Before Selling Assets, Q1 Economic Weakness Blamed On Weather, Inflation "Transitory"

Tyler Durden's picture


Key highlights: "Participants viewed the weakness in first-quarter economic growth as likely to be largely transitory, influenced by unusually severe weather, increases in energy and other commodity prices, and lower-than-expected defense spending. As a result, they saw  economic growth picking up later this year....Recent increases in consumer food and energy prices, together with the small uptick in core consumer price inflation, led the staff to raise its near-term projection for consumer price inflation. However, inflation was expected to recede over the medium term, as food and energy prices were anticipated to decelerate...Nearly all participants indicated that the first step toward normalization should be ceasing to reinvest payments of principal on agency securities and, simultaneously or soon after, ceasing to reinvest principal payments on Treasury securities....A few members remained uncertain about the benefits of the asset purchase program but, with the program nearly completed, judged that making changes to the program at this time was not appropriate...The participants who favored earlier sales also generally indicated a preference for relatively rapid sales, with some suggesting that agency securities in the SOMA be reduced to zero over as little as one or two years. Such an approach was viewed as allowing for a faster return to a normal policy environment, potentially reducing any upside risks to inflation stemming from outsized reserve balances, and more quickly eliminating any effects of SOMA holdings of agency securities on the allocation of credit."

Stone McCarthy's Take Away:

Key Takeaways:

  1. The FOMC made no decision regarding the exact combination of timing and procedures to exit the current extremely easy stance of monetary policy.
  2. The Committee made distinctions between the stance of policy and normalizing the conduct of policy -- how it implemented the removal of accommodation.
  3. The first step in easing would be passive, i.e. ending the reinvestment of maturing securities and principal prepayments as a "modest step" towards tightening.
  4. The second step in easing would be active and raise the fed funds rate target, and that the majority of the Committee favor this approach over selling assets.

On the whole, we read the April 26-27 FOMC meeting minutes as a communication from the Committee regarding its intentions toward and preparedness for an exit from the current extremely easy stance of monetary policy and huge balance sheet. The minutes said that no decisions have as yet been reached, and that further discussion will take place.
Nonetheless, the Committee provided a much clearer picture of the options they have in the exit process, and how conditions could influence the decision making process.

The timing of the exit is still some distance away, but the extensive and detailed discussion in the minutes suggests that the Committee does see conditions are such that the end is now in sight. Normalization of both the stances of policy -- from the enormous size of the balance sheet and near-zero fed funds rate target -- will happen at "the appropriate time." We think that the Committee has increasing evidence of a sustained economic recovery and a less subdued outlook for inflation. If the labor market continues to mend as it has inthe last few months, it seems probable that the FOMC will finally alter its communications and signal the end of the "extended period."


Full minutes:
Fomc Minutes April


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Wed, 05/18/2011 - 14:11 | 1288059 bigdumbnugly
bigdumbnugly's picture

Participants viewed the weakness in first-quarter economic growth as likely to be largely transitory, influenced by unusually severe weather, increases in energy and other commodity prices, and lower-than-expected defense spending. As a result, they saw  economic growth picking up later this year.


well, spring is here, they've smacked down commodity prices with all they've got, and it appears more military actions against whoever are in the offing...


Wed, 05/18/2011 - 14:22 | 1288150 TheTmfreak
TheTmfreak's picture

It was probably the weather that gave Strauss-Kahn HIV too i'm guessin'. Seems to me that the weather is causin' all sorts of problems these days...

Wed, 05/18/2011 - 15:25 | 1288467 ABG LINE
ABG LINE's picture

And probably the "chemtrails" over NYC.


Wed, 05/18/2011 - 14:33 | 1288192 101 years and c...
101 years and counting's picture

and, they'll blame japan and high fuel prices for the weakness in Q2....which, of course, is all transitory.

someone should tell the bankers that their freedom is transitory.


Wed, 05/18/2011 - 16:09 | 1288635 goldfreak
goldfreak's picture

life is transitory

Wed, 05/18/2011 - 14:32 | 1288204 DutchZeroPrinter
DutchZeroPrinter's picture

I believe them when they say weak growth is transitory. Next there won't be growth, it will be a non-transitory collapse.

Wed, 05/18/2011 - 14:12 | 1288062 Gubbmint Cheese
Gubbmint Cheese's picture

growth expected next quarter... no wait.. next quarter.. no.. wait.. next quarter..

next quarter we promise..


Wed, 05/18/2011 - 14:18 | 1288113 TheTmfreak
TheTmfreak's picture

I was thinking the same thing. When are they going to start being pessimistic with any of their damn expectations? I guess I don't want to see what happens when that happens.... (QE zillion)

Wed, 05/18/2011 - 14:18 | 1288127 oogs66
oogs66's picture

every quarter they underestimate inflation and overestimate growth but no one cares!

Wed, 05/18/2011 - 14:56 | 1288308 Missiondweller
Missiondweller's picture

I remember CNBC pounding the table that "green shoots" in the economy were here (back in 2009)!

Wed, 05/18/2011 - 14:12 | 1288064 legal eagle
legal eagle's picture

Yes, blame it on reduced defense spending!  LMFAO

Wed, 05/18/2011 - 14:22 | 1288134 TheTmfreak
TheTmfreak's picture

Makes absolutely no fucking sense. They're speaking gibberish at this point.

Wed, 05/18/2011 - 14:37 | 1288211 Hugh G Rection
Hugh G Rection's picture

Defense Spending has been reduced, military spending is now on offense.


Why should I believe anything the FOMC says???

Wed, 05/18/2011 - 14:39 | 1288220 TheTmfreak
TheTmfreak's picture

Because it is in print.

Wed, 05/18/2011 - 15:06 | 1288346 legal eagle
legal eagle's picture

That made me laugh!

Wed, 05/18/2011 - 14:50 | 1288286 Keri at Bankste...
Keri at Bankster Report's picture

Exactly.  And other poster said "every quarter they underestimate inflation and overestimate growth but no one cares!"  They are ALWAYS wrong, and no one cares!

When has the Fed been right?

It is a pretty sweet job: imagine a gig where you could be constantly wrong, costing your employer trillions, and running the company into the ground, and in return you get another appointment, more authority, daily praise and heralding of your scholarly expertise and erudition, and a license to write long documents of gibberish.  

Wed, 05/18/2011 - 14:12 | 1288065 BillyTheBlade
BillyTheBlade's picture

This can't be good for commodities.....or the economy.

Wed, 05/18/2011 - 14:14 | 1288082 firstdivision
firstdivision's picture

Lots of people about to be caught on the wrong side of the commodity trades this summer...guess who will make out like bandits on it though

Wed, 05/18/2011 - 14:17 | 1288105 Id fight Gandhi
Id fight Gandhi's picture

Commodities will collapse with stocks.I have no doubt in this.

Metals will fall too, but the dying dollar with save them.

Wed, 05/18/2011 - 14:20 | 1288141 LawsofPhysics
LawsofPhysics's picture

my puts?

Wed, 05/18/2011 - 14:10 | 1288069 SpeakerFTD
SpeakerFTD's picture

Bernanke's world:


Good news -   "I did it"

Bad News  - "Transitory"

Wed, 05/18/2011 - 14:22 | 1288135 oogs66
oogs66's picture

maybe he was an MD at an investment bank since that is their motto too

Wed, 05/18/2011 - 14:10 | 1288070 firstdivision
firstdivision's picture

"However, inflation was expected to recede over the medium term, as food and energy prices were anticipated to decelerate"

How about those decelerating commodity prices today, Ben?

Wed, 05/18/2011 - 14:50 | 1288275 Whatta
Whatta's picture

Is his definition of deceleration the same as mine? When I decelerate my truck, I go less fast, but am still going in the same direction. Sooo, food and energy are still going to rise and rise and rise, just not doubling every few months?

Stagflation is still what that sounds like to me.

Wed, 05/18/2011 - 14:10 | 1288071 NOTW777
NOTW777's picture

is the lying transitory?

Wed, 05/18/2011 - 14:20 | 1288122 Id fight Gandhi
Id fight Gandhi's picture

Who junked you over that? We know they lie. We all talk about it daily here. Were like a bunch of old ladies in a sewing circle with gossip.

Wed, 05/18/2011 - 14:21 | 1288147 Cleanclog
Cleanclog's picture

But it's transparent lying, so that's okay, right?

ZIRP until we want to sell assets.  That's the rule.

Wed, 05/18/2011 - 14:48 | 1288266 pazmaker
pazmaker's picture

some on here have personal junkers...I call them secret admirers.. they junk one no matter what one says.

Wed, 05/18/2011 - 15:45 | 1288540 fuu
fuu's picture

They junk you because they love you.


“Although most participants continued to see the risks to their outlooks for economic growth as being broadly balanced, a number now judged those risks to be tilted to the downside.”

Thu, 05/19/2011 - 01:27 | 1290427 StychoKiller
StychoKiller's picture

Women only get restraining orders to prove how much they love you...:>D

Wed, 05/18/2011 - 14:13 | 1288073 slaughterer
slaughterer's picture

Any hints of the form QE3 will take in the minutes?  I cannot find them at first glance. 

Wed, 05/18/2011 - 14:21 | 1288128 firstdivision
firstdivision's picture

It is written in invisible ink, that will only reveal itself if you wipe your ass with it. 

Wed, 05/18/2011 - 14:34 | 1288197 strannick
strannick's picture


Wed, 05/18/2011 - 14:14 | 1288074 TruthInSunshine
TruthInSunshine's picture

No matter what they say, ding dong, QE in even a semi-recognizable form, is dead.

The bell tolls for QEx.

ZIRP for as long as Bernanke can take the heat - which may only be a matter of months, at this point.

I do wish Jim Rickards would get to the task of modeling how much more in treasuries reinvestment of interest income and principal from maturing MBS and other paper would net in terms of buying power for the Fed, because I think he's well off the mark with what he casually threw out months ago.

Wed, 05/18/2011 - 15:16 | 1288401 Bay of Pigs
Bay of Pigs's picture

So you're saying the FED will do absolutely nothing as everything in sight collapses and burns to the ground? That is remarkable considering what they have done so far. That means total financial and economic annihilation on that call Mr. Sunshine.

Wed, 05/18/2011 - 15:54 | 1288493 TruthInSunshine
TruthInSunshine's picture

First, you are presuming a bit much by saying "as everything in sight collapses and burns to the ground," no?

That sounds EXACTLY like something that Bernanke, Paulson and Geithner all would have told Congress would happen had TARP-TALF not been passed immediately, no?

Did I say that will happen? I don't even know what you mean by that. Are you talking literally? Give me some scale.

Second, I didn't say the Fed would do "nothing."What I did say, in a manner, is that Bernanke is pretty much out of ammo, and will keep ZIRP or near ZIRP applied, until the negative feedback loop is too powerful. When will that be? I don't know, but it will happen.

If stoppage of QE equals, to quote your exact words, "total financial and economic annihilation," then the continuation of ZIRP is not going to heal that which ails us (it's a catch 22 type predicament).

Wed, 05/18/2011 - 16:03 | 1288618 Bay of Pigs
Bay of Pigs's picture

Fair enough. Maybe a bit over the top on my part. I agree with you that ultimately there will be a Reckoning Day. I just assume the FED (and Congress) will kick the can down the road as far as they possibly can. To me, it means more QE, not less. Trillions more.

Thu, 05/19/2011 - 01:30 | 1290430 StychoKiller
StychoKiller's picture

What the Fed is trying to prevent:

Physics and Mathematics WILL win in the end! :>(

Wed, 05/18/2011 - 16:15 | 1288668 trav7777
trav7777's picture

a lot of people who missed out shorting in 08 and want to make money off of that or else missed out on the 09-11 runup and are jealous.

The Fed has a print button in everyone's office now, lots of swaps and other mechanisms by which they will introduce credit or currency if the system locks up.  The CBs ARE the interbank lending market now.  If they actually back out, their own paper will implode.

Because the money supply is debt and need be repaid, ALL dollars in existence (save a few based on gold) will be vaporized, still leaving a massive interest repayment on the former money supply which cannot be paid.

In the absence of FRNs, some other form of money or transactional currency will manifest itself.  We already have seen this in the form of barter coupons and scrip in various communities.  Precious FRNs *lose* their ability to serve as money.  In such a situation, FRNs only have worth to stave off insolvency and takeover by bankers.

Wed, 05/18/2011 - 14:13 | 1288077 Racer
Racer's picture

'sub-prime is well contained' type of minutes

Wed, 05/18/2011 - 14:11 | 1288083 legal eagle
legal eagle's picture

My guess is we are close, maybe a week away, from a low in PMs for the year.

Wed, 05/18/2011 - 14:16 | 1288098 slow_roast
slow_roast's picture

guess?  great, not enough of those floating around are there?

Wed, 05/18/2011 - 14:16 | 1288101 slaughterer
slaughterer's picture
05-18 14:08: Fed says most on FOMC said QE3 unlikely without big change in outlook Feed this text into the scanners of about 2,000 HFT algos and see where it directs the market.
Wed, 05/18/2011 - 14:15 | 1288089 slow_roast
slow_roast's picture

Now the lemmings are buying before wandering off the cliff.  QE3 not coming for at least a quarter.  Deflating the commodity sector isn't so difficult as most will find out in the next few months.

Wed, 05/18/2011 - 14:15 | 1288111 slaughterer
slaughterer's picture

C'mon market, let's have a symbolic sell-off pissy fit.   The Bernanke did not come with your QE3 porridge today.

Wed, 05/18/2011 - 14:44 | 1288265 dracos_ghost
dracos_ghost's picture

Yeah, I'm surprised Jim Cramer isn't banging the table screaming "They know nothing,NOTHING!!! Without QE3 hedge fund douchebags won't make their bonuses and buy another private island."

Wed, 05/18/2011 - 14:15 | 1288115 Jack Mehoff
Jack Mehoff's picture

No Press Conference?

Wed, 05/18/2011 - 14:54 | 1288304 Keri at Bankste...
Keri at Bankster Report's picture

Aha! Good point.  Every time he speaks on camera, it is like a B-12 shot for commodites and PM's.

So, no---no press conference.

Wed, 05/18/2011 - 14:16 | 1288116 Lets Hang Parliament
Lets Hang Parliament's picture
"Fed To Raise Rates Before Selling Assets"

That's it then 0.5% forever!

Wed, 05/18/2011 - 14:19 | 1288120 Dick Darlington
Dick Darlington's picture
05-18 14:10: Markets are yet to find direction post the Fed minutes, which showed that the Fed started to debate policy normalisation But it's good that "markets" rose 1% in advance of the Bernank propaganda pages. Just in case.
Wed, 05/18/2011 - 14:19 | 1288129 slaughterer
slaughterer's picture

Got to use the remaining QE2 money to make the end of QE2 look good for the lemmings.

Wed, 05/18/2011 - 14:19 | 1288133 lizzy36
lizzy36's picture

Clever Fed.

Not selling leaves them the option of QE-esque open market activity as balance sheet rolls or just letting it run off.

Wed, 05/18/2011 - 14:20 | 1288139 jtmo3
jtmo3's picture

Is there REALLY anyone left who actually believe these fuck wads? Do they really put this tripe together with the belief that it'll be believed or realized? Come fucking stupid do these morons really think we are?

Wed, 05/18/2011 - 14:21 | 1288145 Silverstar
Silverstar's picture

Well sorry for disturbing...


but take a look to Spain.

In many spanish citys demonstrations against Government are running right now.

Riot Police surounds the Demonstrators.


Take a look on twitter #spanishrevolution



Wed, 05/18/2011 - 14:32 | 1288191 Dick Darlington
Dick Darlington's picture

Ssshhhhh, you're not supposed to say things like this out loud. All the pundits and bankstas are running a massive campaign saying it's all golden in Spain. Not a damn thing to worry abt. =)

Wed, 05/18/2011 - 14:34 | 1288212 Silverstar
Silverstar's picture



nothing to see in spain... so move on... nothing to see


but why this spanish bonds don`t move down ?? Hmmm maybe i need to ask some banker^^

Wed, 05/18/2011 - 14:24 | 1288146 11b40
11b40's picture

From this statement, you might conclude that they viewed inflation as undesirable...yuk, yuk.

"The participants who favored earlier sales also generally indicated a preference for relatively rapid sales, with some suggesting that agency securities in the SOMA be reduced to zero over as little as one or two years. Such an approach was viewed as allowing for a faster return to a normal policy environment, potentially reducing any upside risks to inflation stemming from outsized reserve balances, and more quickly eliminating any effects of SOMA holdings of agency securities on the allocation of credit."


Wed, 05/18/2011 - 14:22 | 1288152 Piranhanoia
Piranhanoia's picture

The contestants all believed they were the only one in the game that was getting their cards from the pinochle deck when the others used a standard B-52.  Weren't they surprised when they found out the game was lowball.  "Did we forget to tell you?"

Wed, 05/18/2011 - 14:24 | 1288156 sabra1
sabra1's picture

with the past weather, massive flooding underway, i cannot wait to see how tame the upcoming hurricane season pans out!

Wed, 05/18/2011 - 14:24 | 1288157 MyKillK
MyKillK's picture

Can anyone explain to me if this news was released today and it makes it clear QE3 isn't coming soon and that is bad for commodities, then why did they all jump significantly today?

Wed, 05/18/2011 - 14:53 | 1288295 mayhem_korner
mayhem_korner's picture

Dey ain't foolin' s no moh

Wed, 05/18/2011 - 15:00 | 1288315 tickhound
tickhound's picture

Cuz the timeline for "transitory" is getting farther from short term, and closer to forever.

Wed, 05/18/2011 - 14:24 | 1288160 Gubbmint Cheese
Gubbmint Cheese's picture

How far underwater are those UST's the Fed's been buying since this all began? And who do they plan to sell them to at prices where they don't have to realize a loss??

Yeah Ben.. sure you are going to start selling..

*rolls eyes*

Wed, 05/18/2011 - 14:31 | 1288193 TruthInSunshine
TruthInSunshine's picture

Let me just hazard an admittedly sloppy guesstimate and proclaim that The Federal Reserve Bank is one of the worst entities in terms of financial health that the world has ever known.

Bernanke's last Chinese takeout had a fortune cookie that read:

Pray for bailout from sovereign via member banks or you're toast, little man with nervous lip.

Thu, 05/19/2011 - 00:50 | 1290382 hawks5999
hawks5999's picture

Don't forget you have to add the words "in bed" to the end of every fortune cookie to make them really interesting.

Wed, 05/18/2011 - 14:51 | 1288291 earnyermoney
earnyermoney's picture

401(k) investors?

Wed, 05/18/2011 - 14:26 | 1288173 Lord Peter Pipsqueak
Lord Peter Pipsqueak's picture

The planned destruction of your currency,standard of living and everyday buying power,is for the xth month,transitory.

For your information and convenience subtract todays date from 12.23.13, and assume the period since is regardless of its longevity or duration, merely temporary or transitory.

Since no politicians or journalists ever question the definition of "transitory" or "temporary",assume the loss of your hard earned wealth is only temporary and will in time be restored by endless creation of electronic currency credits and money creation at your local central bank.Please do not be alarmed,the recent price increases and fall in your living standards and overall wealth are temporary and transitory.

Never forget,Ben Bernanke and Mervyn King are there to control inflation and they both believe in a strong dollar/pound.

Sleep tight.

Wed, 05/18/2011 - 15:14 | 1288406 Spitzers Black Socks
Spitzers Black Socks's picture

I think the definition of "transitory" and "temporary" they're using is calibrated on a geologic time scale.

Wed, 05/18/2011 - 14:30 | 1288174 buzzsaw99
buzzsaw99's picture

Translation: we are never going to significantly raise rates and when we sell assets it will be to our friends for pennies on the $. The fed is a bunch of liars and thieves.

Wed, 05/18/2011 - 14:31 | 1288186 youngman
youngman's picture

They are forgetting on very big thing in their minutes......the rest of the world...the rest of the world is working to get out from under our thumb....I think that is going to have a much bigger affect than any SOMA or an interest rate hike..

Wed, 05/18/2011 - 14:31 | 1288194 RobotTrader
RobotTrader's picture


Now that they have "whipped" inflation with margin hikes, they are now "whipping" inflation again by jawboning.

The hubris and the egos of these guys must be huge.

Probably high-fiving as we speak.

Wed, 05/18/2011 - 14:40 | 1288227 DUNTHAT
DUNTHAT's picture

I wonder if Ben got Dominque's cast offs??

Wed, 05/18/2011 - 14:37 | 1288229 DUNTHAT
DUNTHAT's picture

I wonder if Ben got Dominque's cast offs??

Wed, 05/18/2011 - 14:38 | 1288236 baby_BLYTHE
baby_BLYTHE's picture


Wed, 05/18/2011 - 14:43 | 1288259 Robslob
Robslob's picture

Poor Robo...doesn't understand 1 day does not a "policy" make.

Wed, 05/18/2011 - 14:32 | 1288201 tedsmojo
tedsmojo's picture

Fed logic

We will only do QE3 if it all goes to hell.

If we don't do QE3 it will all go to to hell.

Therefore, we will do QE3.

Wed, 05/18/2011 - 14:50 | 1288264 baby_BLYTHE
baby_BLYTHE's picture

since the world is ending in 2012 I expect the next round of QE will be when the S&P collapses 15-20% (target predicted by Marc Faber and others).

QE3 will be well over 1 trillion to include 100% of Government debt and banking securities. One more huge BANG wealth effect before the dollar and the world collapse.

Visual of Ben's war against the purchasing power of the world's reserve currency:

Wed, 05/18/2011 - 14:37 | 1288207 ffart
ffart's picture

Housing & retail markets confirmed for quint-deca-sextuple dip this summer.

Wed, 05/18/2011 - 15:38 | 1288228 bigdumbnugly
bigdumbnugly's picture

Because blah blah blah is free.  Oral manipulation that doesn't cost anything (what a concept though) and serves the needed purpose. 

Of course there will be qe3 in some way, shape, or  form.  I remember people thinking that qe2 wasn't coming because they didn't clearly state it was.

They will talk the talk until the talk doesn't hold water and then bring in the easing bucket again.  Wonder what shape it will be this time?

Wed, 05/18/2011 - 14:37 | 1288230 gunsmoke011
gunsmoke011's picture

Everything is going EXACTLY ACCORDING TO PLAN! Now Please - coninue dancing, the chairs are securely bolted to the deck -- WE PROMISE!

Wed, 05/18/2011 - 14:49 | 1288270 Hephasteus
Hephasteus's picture

This is kind of true. 1st quarter weakness and inflation is transiting to 2nd quarter shitting twice and dying and hyperinflation.

Wed, 05/18/2011 - 14:49 | 1288273 wang
wang's picture

Canada/Vancover real estate crash predicted by many continues to be evasive

From Bloomberg:

 Vancouver Homes Pricier Than NYC

"Canada is a very attractive country these days for many reasons," said Mr. Rogers, the U.S. investor. "They've done a much better job than the United States has over the past 15 to 20 years."


Mish (especially Mish), Rosie, Turner and a bunch  of others have been suggesting for three years that the market there is due to crash. I suspect at 50% drop from these levels would still be higher than the base they were starting from. 

Wed, 05/18/2011 - 14:47 | 1288274 Seasmoke
Seasmoke's picture

was it the snow, rain or sun ?


Wed, 05/18/2011 - 14:49 | 1288278 NOTW777
NOTW777's picture

"A few members remained uncertain about the benefits of the asset purchase program but,"


whats a few trillion if its not your money - "uncertain"  how polite

Wed, 05/18/2011 - 14:53 | 1288280 NOTW777
NOTW777's picture


Wed, 05/18/2011 - 14:52 | 1288282 Raymond Reason
Raymond Reason's picture

The Fed knows QE3 is unavoidable, and it will happen precisely when QE2 ends.  It won't be called something else.  It won't be called anything, because it will be invisible, yet it will exist.  They will use the debt ceiling to cut some govt fat for theater, but the remaining 95% of govt will be magically funded.  The stock market will prove to be more resilient than expected, and the CBs will continue to short commodities, and they will not move much up or down.  And thus the status quo will be preserved for a while longer....until shortages manifest.

Well that's my guess.   

Wed, 05/18/2011 - 16:26 | 1288697 trav7777
trav7777's picture

it is pretty clear that if they do not buy the auctions, the auctions will fail.  This is inarguable.

Therefore anyone who claims QE3 won't exist or that QE is ending is a fool.  It cannot end.  The Fed MUST buy the UST auctions or else the auctions will fail.

Perhaps the USG will just eat through every receipt of pension funds and everything still will not be enough.

Wed, 05/18/2011 - 14:53 | 1288294 Vincent Vega
Vincent Vega's picture

I find it amusing that the word 'transitory' is used so frequently by The Bernank. It reminds me of Greenspan when he first uttered 'conundrum'. I'm trying to remember if Volker had a particular word???

Wed, 05/18/2011 - 15:01 | 1288323 wang
wang's picture

“There is no benefit to running our financial system in its current fashion, with high risks (for society) and high returns (for top bankers).”

Too bad they disemboweled him

Wed, 05/18/2011 - 14:56 | 1288298 Flore
Flore's picture

Under Strauss-Kahn the IMF's pursuit of financial stability has included calls for a possible replacement of the dollar as the world's reserve currency. An IMF report from January 2011 called for a stronger role for Special Drawing Rights (SDR) in order to stabilize the global financial system.

According to the report, an expanded role for SDRs could help to stabilize the international monetary system. Furthermore, for most countries (except for those using the U.S. dollar as their currency) there would be several advantages in switching the pricing of certain assets, such as oil and gold, from dollars to SDRs.

For some commentators that amounts to a call for a "new world currency that would challenge the dominance of the dollar".

Strauss-Kahn made comments that could be perceived as critical of global financial actors, in an interview for a documentary about the Late-2000s financial crisis, Inside Job (2010). He said he had attended a dinner organised by former Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson in which several CEOs of 'the biggest banks in the U.S' had admitted they (or perhaps bankers in general) were 'too greedy' and bore part of the responsibility for the crisis. They said the government " 'should regulate more, because we are too greedy, we can't avoid it.' " Strauss-Kahn said he warned the officials of a number of departments of the U.S. government of an impending crisis. He also said: "At the end of the day, the poorest – as always – pay the most."

Wed, 05/18/2011 - 15:06 | 1288341 web bot
web bot's picture

Words of wisdom from a (edit out: parasite) innocent man that understands how to prey on the poorest and most vulnerable.

Wed, 05/18/2011 - 15:13 | 1288380 buzzsaw99
buzzsaw99's picture

Naw, it's customary in france to pork the hotel maid on your way out the door.

Thu, 05/19/2011 - 01:48 | 1290443 StychoKiller
StychoKiller's picture

DSK threw in the (IMF) towel!

Wed, 05/18/2011 - 14:54 | 1288300 mayhem_korner
mayhem_korner's picture

Frog is starting to boil...

Wed, 05/18/2011 - 15:05 | 1288340 TruthInSunshine
TruthInSunshine's picture


Bernanke's CV should have an itemized statement expounding on his lack of proficiency in properly boiling frogs (i.e. the way that causes little concern).

The Bernank water is way too hot, and worse yet, many (even somewhat comatose) people feel the heat.

Wed, 05/18/2011 - 14:57 | 1288303 ShaneAshton
ShaneAshton's picture

Last time I checked....everything I learned for my economics degree no longer applies.

So here's my quote...

My belief in economic growth as a construct is NOT transitory!!!!

Economic growth is a myth and only possible with fiat money.  There is a finite size to the pie that we all feast from.  Changing the size of the pie is impossible...just changing the illusion of it.


Wed, 05/18/2011 - 15:52 | 1288570 TruthInSunshine
TruthInSunshine's picture

Nothing about actual economics or rules of money/finance, etc. applied to tulips, dot.coms or real estate, either during past times.

Until they did.

If your economic theory is sound and correlates well with rational behavior of economic participants, you're likely to be more correct than wrong, and more often over the intermediate and long term.

Wed, 05/18/2011 - 15:03 | 1288328 sbenard
sbenard's picture

If economic weakness and slow sales were "transitory", then shouldn't rising prices have also backed off? This is erroneous logic! They are claiming what they WANT to be, NOT what IS!

Wed, 05/18/2011 - 15:01 | 1288333 Temporalist
Temporalist's picture

So if the Fed raises rate people will want to perhaps save more because they'll be getting a better return on their cash thus removing "liquidity" as savings would increase; the Fins will increase borrowing rates decreasing "liquidity."  Also the rates on mortgages would also rise hampering any "recovery" in RE which is quadruple dipping (Seinfeld has nothing on Case-Shiller) presently.

I'm curious to see what happens. 

Wed, 05/18/2011 - 16:25 | 1288705 trav7777
trav7777's picture


where do you think the money comes from to pay you your freaking interest on your savings?

Wed, 05/18/2011 - 15:05 | 1288338 ivana
ivana's picture

What a bunch of crap. Lies and hypocrisy.

They are waiting for black swan coming from abroad to give them excuse for something like QE3 later this year or 2012.

But I dare to predict that QE3 will not manifest itself on markets like QEs before.

This time there will be blood and some serious purging

Wed, 05/18/2011 - 15:17 | 1288339 YHC-FTSE
YHC-FTSE's picture

The headline reads, "Fed to raise rates....", and there is mention of it in the review section (p.3 "A majority of participants preferred that sales of agency securities come after the first increase in the FOMC’s target for short-term interest rates"), but I must have missed that in the Committee Policy Action section. There's no mention of interest rates being voted on, just the blurb about buying up another $600B of treasuries. 


It'd be nice to know if they are raising interest rates and by how much. 

ps: Needless to say probably, but the economic review reads as though these people live in a bunker on Mars. 

Wed, 05/18/2011 - 15:09 | 1288357 SilverRhino
SilverRhino's picture

>> Fed To Raise Rates Before Selling Assets

Important fucking question.  Which assets?  

MBS / RE?   Instant fucking fail as higher interest rates drive prices down.

Treasuries?   Better get to 10% if they want to crush PM's otherwise you're looking at negative real rates.


Wed, 05/18/2011 - 15:15 | 1288389 ffart
ffart's picture

Raising interest on treasuries would crush the financial sector that's basically the only growth component of the US economy left. And how are they going to service their 100% of GDP which would quickly become 200% of GDP debt at 10% interest. Oh wait, I think I know the answer...

Wed, 05/18/2011 - 15:09 | 1288360 b_thunder
b_thunder's picture

they'll raise rates 'cause they won't be able to see any of those so-called "securities" for anywhere close to the price that they've paid!  The Fed can't afford to show losses!  instead they  will hold that toxic crap "to maturity" and compensate for the inflated balance sheet with MUCH HIGHER rates over the long term - next 10-20 years.


Wed, 05/18/2011 - 16:39 | 1288742 trav7777
trav7777's picture

the economy's aggregate rate of return is now basically 0.  It cannot support higher rates.  There's no economic activity that can pay that coupon.

This is what debt saturation looks like or exhaustion.  Look where the ZIRP went...was it to build shit?  Invest?  Or did it just end up speculating.

The entire debtmoney edifice wants to come apart.

Wed, 05/18/2011 - 15:07 | 1288361 hangemhigh77
hangemhigh77's picture

the weather is really bad at my house today, I think my house lost 30% of it's value today.

Wed, 05/18/2011 - 15:12 | 1288370 Pepe
Pepe's picture

Weather is transitory and unpredictable. Inflation is predictable and probably not transitory

Wed, 05/18/2011 - 15:12 | 1288372 sbenard
sbenard's picture

Please don't tell today's Mr. Market about "receding" food prices. Ag commodities are exploding higher once again.

All roads lead to higher prices.

Wed, 05/18/2011 - 15:17 | 1288407 web bot
web bot's picture

transitory...   :D

Wed, 05/18/2011 - 15:12 | 1288386 AldoHux_IV
AldoHux_IV's picture

In an all things being equal this may sound like reassuring news to those who think the fed have a good handle on things, but in reality their understanding of risk is limited due to the fact they need to maintain a certain air of legitimacy.  They expect commodity price rises to be transitory, but expect inflation both PCE and core to increase over the long term (meaning that you thought that this was inflationary right now, wait til a couple of more years i.e. they will continue to debase the dollar as it is the only synthetic way to goose growth) and they expect unemployment to be at levels still inconsistent with their mandate by 2013 (i.e. not raising rates until 2013 minimum).

1. The risks vs rewards do not make QE in any form a success for the real economy.  Thus, it is logical to conclude that this has been a farce to really address the thing they so conveniently left out which was DEBT.

2. All other things being equal is as useful to reality as saying if the heroin addict continues to drink coffee then the prospects of them recovering and kicking the habit look promising.

Wed, 05/18/2011 - 15:14 | 1288402 web bot
web bot's picture

At a minimum, they're talking about how, over time, are they doing to start to shrink the Fed's balance sheet. It's a ways off... but this should not go unnoticed.

The real problem however is the US deficit... this is what we should be very worried about. This is the tripwire for default and a run on the US dollar.

Wed, 05/18/2011 - 15:21 | 1288444 Clowns on Acid
Clowns on Acid's picture

Ho feckin' hum. Essentially says that the Fed will do whatever it takes to maintain equity and bonds prices up.

Oh yeh, and don't be worried about inflation because that is only transitory, and we have everything under control.

Just like DSK did until he didn't.

Wed, 05/18/2011 - 15:34 | 1288500 TruthInSunshine
TruthInSunshine's picture

Bernanke has the clap and crabs, too?

Thu, 05/19/2011 - 02:44 | 1290495 nathan1234
nathan1234's picture

Hope he has AIDS, Syp and gets his VD degree with a phd

Wed, 05/18/2011 - 15:48 | 1288554 Use of Weapons
Use of Weapons's picture

In other weather related news, grab your tin foil for these links.


HAARP aficionados just came in their pants.

Wed, 05/18/2011 - 15:56 | 1288577 sschu
sschu's picture

It is clear and has been stated so many times that the Fed is boxed in, they have set the course and now fear for their survival if they change direction.  And rightfully so, if they raise rates or fail to monetize the debt, then the economy crashes/adjusts and the political cretins call for their necks. 

Richard Koo talked about this issue yesterday in the ZH article, when Japan undertook austerity and budget balancing, the economy crashed and they changed direction fast.  The US in in the same boat, but has a few bigger problems like reserve currency and international owners of our debt. 

We know the government will not cut spending without threats from the market.  The Fed cannot fail to finance the debt if they want to maintain their power.  It is a big game of chicken and the American people are stuck in the middle.

A crash or 20 years of this stagflation and 3rd-world status is our future.  Thanks Bennie.


Wed, 05/18/2011 - 16:55 | 1288654 LudwigVon
LudwigVon's picture

This statement is like all others, intended to maximize the time component in the future value equation.

Reading it is like seeing a decked out hooptie go by, the illusion of moving slower with the more expensive marque of spinner rims/wheels suggesting a slower roll. "An orderly decline."

Any Ponzi must grow to be sustained.

"American worker more competitive."

Laying the best verbal foundation possible to maximize the "hand off," ie: extracting maximum value. The extent to which this fails will be monetized at the appropriate time. We all understand the ferocity of the fall ahead, Fed included, truth spoken subtracts value per A Blinder.

Time is value.

Quantity of buy-in on the next hand-off is marginal value as well.

The idea is talk your book. Set expectations that also add short term value to your asset. Market falls, USD instruments rise. This process, once again adds time. One more time... how many times? Gotta spend all this money now!! Is there a super-Obama for next president that can get this pyramid built right? Should be a fun decade...


Wed, 05/18/2011 - 17:19 | 1288893 machineh
machineh's picture

'The majority of the committee favor [raising the Fed funds rate target] over selling assets.'

Now that will be an impressive trick! The old school approach (supply-demand and all that rot) suggests that they can control the interest rate, OR the supply of reserves. But not both.

Of course, it would be just like a bunch of egghead PhD Econs to miss a point so basic that a Home Economics major could explain it.

Dr. Hussman claims that they'll have to absorb as much as a trillion in excess reserves just to jack the Fed funds by the first quarter percent. But the Masters of the Monetary System say it's just a matter of twirling a knob -- it doesn't have to be connected to anything!

Stay tuned as Ben 'Canute' Bernanke commands the interest rate tide to roll in ... or as the tide rolls him.


Thu, 05/19/2011 - 02:40 | 1290491 nathan1234
nathan1234's picture

The Fed will of course have to loan the money to buy these assets in the first place. Then yet again they will buy back these assets. Oh what a tangled web is being weaved!!

The sooner these jokers are strung up the sooner the world can revive from the mess they have created

Wed, 05/18/2011 - 17:22 | 1288910 mtomato2
mtomato2's picture

Um, but, ahh...


I thought bad weather was GOOD for economic growth...


You know...  Broken windows and all...

Wed, 05/18/2011 - 18:03 | 1289069 silberblick
silberblick's picture

First Dominique-Strauss Kahn, now billionaire and silver bull Hugo Salinas Price is fearful that something will happen to him next:

Wed, 05/18/2011 - 18:05 | 1289077 goldfreak
goldfreak's picture

should I sell all my PM's now that Bernank promised to raise rates?

Wed, 05/18/2011 - 18:08 | 1289087 XRAYD
XRAYD's picture

RRaise rates before seeling assets?


ZH seems to have a contrary take to the WSJ:


"Federal Reserve officials appeared to agree at their last meeting that letting the central bank's huge balance sheet slowly shrink was likely to be the first step toward tightening monetary policy,...

Wed, 05/18/2011 - 19:08 | 1289293 I am Jobe
I am Jobe's picture

Choo Choo, oncoming train and this time it is on a collision course.

Wed, 05/18/2011 - 19:10 | 1289297 sschu
sschu's picture

I just cannot help but be amazed at the arrogance of these people, Bennie and the Fed board act likes they are kings!

Maybe, just maybe, the people do NOT WANT THIS STUFF.  We did not want big financial institutions bailed out, we did not want $1 trillion in stimulus, we did not want QEx and all that it entails, we just want these guys to STOP IT!  Quit spending us into bankruptcy and stop tweaking our monetary system to your ends!

They think they are kings, royalty and nobility.  As Jefferson has said, the time draws near to water the tree of liberty with the blood of these tyrants!  The cost is the blood of patriots, it is high, but so be it.


Wed, 05/18/2011 - 22:29 | 1290062 zerohedge5
zerohedge5's picture

you know what they say...


Lawrence Livermore Laboratories has discovered the heaviest element yet known to science.(Note to readers: This is a joke.)

The new element, Governmentium(Gv), has one neutron, 25 assistant neutrons, 88 deputy neutrons, and 198 assistant deputy neutrons, giving it an atomic mass of 312.

These 312 particles are held together by forces called morons, which are surrounded by vast quantities of lepton-like particles called peons. Since Governmentium has no electrons, it is inert; however, it can be detected, because it impedes every reaction with which it comes into contact.

A tiny amount of Governmentium can cause a reaction that would normally take less than a second, to take from four days to four years to complete.

Governmentium has a normal half-life of 2- 6 years; It does not decay, but instead undergoes a reorganization in which a portion of the assistant neutrons and deputy neutrons exchange places.

In fact, Governmentium’s mass will actually increase over time, since each reorganization will cause more morons to become neutrons, forming isodopes. This characteristic of moron promotion leads some scientists to believe that Governmentium is formed whenever morons reach a critical concentration.

This hypothetical quantity is referred to as critical morass. When catalyzed with money, Governmentium becomes Administratium, an element that radiates just as much energy as Governmentium since it has half as many peons but twice as many morons.

Wed, 05/18/2011 - 23:55 | 1290308 Bansters-in-my-...
Bansters-in-my- feces's picture

what a bunch of delusionl fucktards.....
to put it mildly.

Do NOT follow this link or you will be banned from the site!