Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Bernanke Interview on ABC at 6:30 PM

by Bill McBride on 3/27/2012 06:29:00 PM

From the transcript:

CHAIRMAN BERNANKE: Well, we are in a recovery. The economy's been growing-- for almost three years. And we've had some good news lately. We've-- seen the unemployment rate come down. We've seen more jobs be created. And-- consumer and household-- and business sentiment have all improved, so that's all positive, but--

DIANE SAWYER: Strong?

CHAIRMAN BERNANKE: --we do have a long way to go. I-- I would say that we-- you know, it's-- it's far too early to declare victory. We have-- still 8.3% unemployment, that's-- that's too high. We've got a lot of people been un-- out of work for more than six months.
...
DIANE SAWYER: Another quantitative easing on the table, always possible?

CHAIRMAN BERNANKE: Well, we don't take any options off the table. We don't know what's gonna happen in the future and we have to be prepared to respond to however the economy evolves. But again we have 17 people around the table. We look at the economy-- comprehensively and-- and review it-- at every meeting and we try to assess, you know, how much progress we're making and what else we can do that will help us achieve both the growth we want, the reduction in unemployment we want, but also maintain the price stability, the low inflation which is the other part of our mandate.
...
DIANE SAWYER: I-- I want to just make sure I cover housing. And we're seeing these mixed signals on housing, housing prices still low, but we are seeing some-- up-tick in new house sales and also existing house sales. Have we hit bottom on housing?

CHAIRMAN BERNANKE: Well, housing remains-- a big concern for us. Normally in a recovery you would see housing growing much more quickly, construction-- housing related industries. So far housing is-- kinda still pretty flat. We have seen a few signs-- of-- of progress-- a few extra permits for construction. We see more construction in multi-family-- housing. More people are moving into apartment buildings for example. So there's a bit of-- a bit of a green shoot there if you-- if you will. But-- you know, we're not really yet in a full-fledged housing recovery. And you know, that will be part of-- the full recovery of the economy.

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