Thursday, November 5, 2015

Flip Flopping Statements Suggest Confusion From the Fed

Yesterday morning Reuters reported that Yellen sees December's meeting as possibly live - a potential starting point for interest rate liftoff,

"What the committee has been expecting is that the economy will continue to grow at a pace that is sufficient to generate further improvements in the labor market and to return inflation to our 2 percent target over the medium term," Yellen said at a House Financial Services Committee hearing.

"If the incoming information supports that expectation then our statement indicates that December would be a live possibility."

By the afternoon, Reuters reported that anything, potentially negative interest rates were on the table.

"Potentially anything - including negative interest rates - would be on the table. But we would have to study carefully how they would work here in the U.S. context," Yellen told a House of Representatives committee.

Which is it? The policy of increased transparency at the Fed clearly doesn't exclude contradicting statements.

If the Fed triggers liftoff in December, it likely won't be attributed to economic strength. It likely doesn't matter since the majority can't tell the difference between growth and contraction until well after the fact.


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