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Plosser Calls Fed Data-Dependence Words Step to More Clarity

Bloomberg Businessweek (11/12/14) Jeff Kearns

Charles Plosser, president of the Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia, says language added to the central bank’s last statement about how it would keep interest rates low for a “considerable time” after its asset purchases end will help prepare markets for a sooner-than-expected increase in rates. Most policy makers forecast a rate hike in 2015.

“The committee explicitly noted that should the economy make faster progress than anticipated toward its goals, liftoff could occur earlier, and if progress was slower than anticipated, liftoff could be delayed,” says Plosser. “This is the operative language and it makes clear that the committee intends for policy to be data-dependent.” He adds that “the economy has made considerable progress toward full employment and price stability” and that “we should no longer be conducting monetary policy as if we were still in the midst of a financial crisis or in the depths of a recession.”