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Wednesday, November 02, 2011

A few comments on the Bernanke Press Briefing

by Calculated Risk on 11/02/2011 03:57:00 PM

• The video of the press conference will be available soon.

• Bernanke made it clear the Fed stands ready to take additional policy action. This would probably be additional buying of agency (Fannie & Freddie) MBS.

Sudeep Reddy at the WSJ has some notes: Recap: Ben Bernanke’s November Press Conference and this is the key section:

"The outlook remains unsatisfactory over the next few years," [Bernanke] says, and at the Fed "we'll continue to ask ourselves" whether additional stimulus is warranted. Doing more "remains on the table," he says.
Although Bernanke was noncommittal, and always pointed out that further action would be a committee decision, I believe his comments mean the Fed will act if the outlook doesn't improve soon as compared to their current forecast. Their current forecast is already pretty dismal - clearly "unsatisfactory".

• Here are the Fed's current forecasts. In the previous post, I included these forecasts and the earlier forecasts for this year to show the steady downgrade.

• Bernanke twice repeated that "it would be helpful if the Fed got some help from other parts of the government" on trying to stimulate the economy in the short term. He was clearly referring to a new jobs program.