Instant View: Minutes from Fed’s Sept 21 policy meeting

NEW YORK (BestGrowthStock) – Federal Reserve policymakers last month felt further monetary easing could be appropriate before long, according to minutes of their September 21 meeting.

KEY POINTS: * In the economic forecast prepared for the September FOMC meeting, the staff lowered its projection for the increase in real economic activity over the second half of 2010. * The staff also reduced slightly its forecast of growth next year but continued to anticipate a moderate strengthening of the expansion in 2011 as well as a further pickup in economic growth in 2012.

COMMENTS:

KURT KARL, CHIEF US ECONOMIST, SWISS RE, NEW YORK: “There are no real surprises with the minutes and the question about QE remains open. But the good news after reading the minutes is that it doesn’t seem the Fed is as worried about the economy as previously thought. That may be one of the reasons why the stock market is reaction positively.

CHRIS RUPKEY, CHIEF FINANCIAL ECONOMIST, BANK OF TOKYO/MITSUBISHI UFJ, NEW YORK:

“It looks like policymakers were sharpening their knives at September’s meeting, and while they cannot cut rates, they are prepared to flood the market with liquidity to try to jump-start

this economy once and for all.”

JIM GREFENSTETTE, PORTFOLIO MANAGER OF THE MIDCAP GROWTH

STRATEGY FUND, FEDERATED INVESTORS, PITTSBURGH

“It is reasonably in line with what we expected, which is that they are more likely to be accommodative. The last thing they want to do is even test the odds of deflation. They have to do something about the weak employment situation…They are more likely than not to come up with some sort of easing program sooner rather than later.”

MICHAEL SHELDON, CHIEF MARKET STRATEGIST, RDM FINANCIAL,

WESTPORT, CONNECTICUT:

“From the comments that have come out so far, it looks like the Fed is moving closer to another round of quantitative easing but also wants to weigh the benefits and risks, and also, importantly, find a way to communicate its intentions to the market.

“The Fed has almost boxed themselves into a corner in the sense that the market expects some type of activity. The only question is how much and when.

“The tone of the minutes reflects fairly a weak economy in terms of job growth, housing and inflation.”

NICK BENNENBROEK, HEAD OF FX STRATEGY, WELLS FARGO, NEW YORK:

“The most important statement is the first headline — ‘further monetary easing could be appropriate before long’. That is far more important than any of the following headlines. The comments support and reinforce the view that there will be Fed policy action at the November meeting. This seems to be the consensus now and so we’re seeing the euro gaining against the dollar. Gains, however, are being limited, I guess because the markets have pretty much priced in this scenario. But the overall weak trend in the dollar remains in place.

MICHAEL WOOLFOLK, SENIOR CURRENCY STRATEGIST, BNY MELLON

“It looks like they are moving forward with QE2. They did not provide much guidance in terms of when they will deliver it, but I think it’s fair to expect it to arrive sometime after the election and before the end of the year. I was impressed that they view incoming data recently as better-than-expected, but even so, there is growing concern about deflation risks, and the majority believes the appropriate way to defend against that is with further easing. For the market, the minutes were one of the few things on its radar today, but I don’t think this changes expectations much. That’s one reason why after an initial knee-jerk reaction in the euro there was no further carry-through.”

MARKET REACTION: STOCKS: U.S. stocks (Read more about the stock market today. ) erased losses after the release of the Fed minutes. BONDS: U.S. Treasury debt prices extend losses slightly. DOLLAR: U.S. dollar extends gains versus euro after the minutes release.

Instant View: Minutes from Fed’s Sept 21 policy meeting