While today's 2:15 pm FOMC press conference is still some time away, it is never too late to reserve your seats: the conference will be presented below live. We will liveblog the event in the off chance Bernanke says something that may be even modestly unexpected, such as the truth.
In case anyone is still confused about what is going on:
Chairman Ben S. Bernanke will hold press briefings four times per year to present the Federal Open Market Committee's current economic projections and to provide additional context for the FOMC's policy decisions.
In 2011, the Chairman's press briefings will be held at 2:15 p.m. following FOMC decisions scheduled on April 27, June 22 and November 2. The briefings will be broadcast live on the Federal Reserve's website. For these meetings, the FOMC statement is expected to be released at around 12:30 p.m., one hour and forty-five minutes earlier than for other FOMC meetings.
The introduction of regular press briefings is intended to further enhance the clarity and timeliness of the Federal Reserve's monetary policy communication. The Federal Reserve will continue to review its communications practices in the interest of ensuring accountability and increasing public understanding.
Live link. We have picked a green frame border for obvious reasons.
- FED RAISES ESTIMATES FOR 2011 CORE INFLATION TO 1.3%-1.6%, WAS 1.0%-1.3% BEFORE
- FED REDUCES GROWTH OUTLOOK FOR 2011, SEES TRANSITORY INFLATION
- FED POLICY MAKERS SEE 3.1% TO 3.3% ECONOMIC GROWTH FOR 2011, WAS 3.4%-3.9% BEFORE
- FED FORECASTS HEADLINE INFLATION OF 2.1% TO 2.8% THIS YEAR
The Chairsatan speaks.
Supposedly, despite the drop in the economy, Bernanke still sees strength in the employment trend.
Bernanke's voice sounds like a Stradivarious tremollo.
Bernanke remains confident he can tighten whenever needed. When the tie for tightening comes, he will consider both parts of his dual mandate. Nothing about the third mandate.
Bernanke expects Q1 GDP of under 2% but believes slowdown is "transitory", factors are the "weather", weaker construction, and "less momentum"
On how Bernanke's policies are destroying the middle class: we care about low inflation and attracting foreign capital to boost the dollar. Pinocchio is spinning in his grave.
What will the Fed do on surging fuel prices? A.Gasoline prices have risen quite significantly. This is a bad development (and an understatement). All of the increase in demand for oil has come from emerging economies. On supply side we have disruptions in MENA, which has driven gas prices up. All of the increase in the inflation forecast comes from the jump in gas prices. Nothing the Fed can do about surging gas prices without detailing growth. "The Fed does not print oil." But Fed will try to stop pass through costs from rising (whatever that means).
How is Fed working to create sustained job creation? A. Labor market is improving. Must make sure it is sustainable. Is encouraging to see improvement in recent months, although pace is quite slow.
Is there anything the Fed can do to prevent the public from believing higher inflation is coming? A. The inflation expectations we are worried about are medium term. In the indexed bond market see near-term inflation expectations rise significantly, but "for the most part" it is fair to say medium term expectations have not moved very much, and "indicate confidence in the Fed." In the short run can communicate what our policy is attempting to do, and what steps we are willing to take. If inflation persists, there is no substitute for action.
What will be the impact on the economic recovery when QE2 ends? How long with the Fed continue reinvestments? A. Will complete program without tapering. End of program is unlikely to have effects on market or economy. We hope to have telegraphed what we are planning to do. We subscribe to a stock view of securities purchases, which means that what matters is not the pace of ongoing purchase, but size of portfolio of Fed holdings. The amount of securities will remain constant so we don't expect an adverse effect from halting QE2. As for ending reinvestments will base decision on evolving outlook.
QE2 appears to have been ineffective. Can you end the program in June with unemployment rate still at 9%? A. I do believe QE2 was effective: we saw that first in the financial markets: we saw increases in stock prices, and reduced spreads. You would expect that based on decades of economic data that easing financial conditions would lead to easing economic conditions [but have not]. The conclusion that QE2 has been ineffective is wrong as it did the things it set forth to do. The trade offs are getting less attractive at this point. Unclear we can get improvements in payrolls without additional inflation risk, and if we are going to do a sustainable recovery, we need to keep inflation under control.
Can Fed effectively reduce long-term unemployment? A. LT unemployment is the worst it's been in the post WWII world. More people are unemployed for over 6 months than ever. Blah Blah Blah.
Do you think the US will be downgraded? A. This event [S&P warning] will provide one more incentive for congress to resolve the fiscal US problem. It's constructive.
Isn't it possible that the Fed's policies could be providing the reason for inflation? A. We don't view our policies as different from ordinary monetary policy. Problem is chosing the appropraite path of tightening, we have lots of experience in doing so? [Oh really, how many times has the Fed actually tightened under Bernanke's control].
What do you think will happen to the dollar? A. It will eventually rebound. Next question.
Some question about Rogoff and America's imminent bankruptcy. Same worthless answers.
This whole conference has been a complete and utter disappointment, and a disgrace for the jouranlistic profession. All the "reporters" who were there and asked the completely irrelevant questions they did will not be forgotten.