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Fed Unlikely to Alter Course After Jobs Report

Wall Street Journal (01/10/14) Jon Hilsenrath

The U.S. Federal Reserve is unlikely to alter its policy of gradual reductions in its monthly bond purchases as a result of the recent disappointing jobs report. The Fed’s policy committee will met Jan. 28-29, when officials will discuss reducing bond purchases from $75 billion in January to $65 billion. Chairman Ben Bernanke indicated in December the Fed could reduce its purchases by $10 billion each month.

Complicating matters is the fact that the 6.7% jobless rate is due in part to people leaving the workforce, some due to retirement but some because people have given up on finding employment. Regardless of the reason, however, the Fed continues to base its decisions on the jobless rate.