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News Link • Federal Reserve

Top Fed officials set table for more easing

•, By Ann Saphir

"We are right at that edge, that if economic data keep coming in below our expectations -- and our view is we are not making progress on our mandates, or we don't expect to make progress on our mandates -- then I think we would need more accommodation," San Francisco Fed President John Williams told reporters after a speech in the resort area of Coeur D'Alene, Idaho.

  But, underscoring the divisions at the U.S. central bank, Richmond Fed President Jeffrey Lacker reiterated his opposition to a new round of stimulus in an interview with Bloomberg Radio.  The Fed has kept benchmark short-term interest rates near zero since December 2008 and signaled it would keep them there until at least late 2014 to bolster the economy.  It has undertaken two unprecedented rounds of quantitative easing, buying $2.3 trillion in long-term securities to push down borrowing costs.

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