Federal Reserve Blog

Friday, December 3, 2010 9:18 am
By Greg McBride, CFA · Bankrate.com

The November jobs report came in well short of expectations. November saw just 39,000 new jobs and 50,000 in the private sector, compared to expectations in the 130,000-175,000 neighborhood. The revisions that make September and October appear slightly better are no consolation. Yes, the November figures will be revised twice more, but it won’t be enough to

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Wednesday, December 1, 2010 3:43 pm
By Greg McBride, CFA · Bankrate.com

The economic report used by the Federal Open Market Committee to evaluate the health of the economy — known as the Beige Book – showed the economy “continued to improve, on balance” between October and November. The news was generally positive and consistent with an economy slowly getting to its feet, but not bounding ahead by

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Wednesday, November 3, 2010 4:17 pm
By Greg McBride, CFA · Bankrate.com

The Federal Open Market Committee announced a $600 billion bond purchase program, to take place now through June 2011, in an effort to stave off any threat of deflation and kick start the economy. While the program will likely succeed in avoiding deflation – many would argue we’ll avoid it anyway – this doesn’t solve our economic

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Thursday, October 28, 2010 12:59 pm
By Greg McBride, CFA · Bankrate.com

The Federal Open Market Committee, which meets Nov. 2-3, is all but certain to announce renewed measures intended to boost the economy. Specifically, the Fed will engage in another round of bond-buying, snapping up government debt with newly created money. It is hardly a secret this is coming; for those of you too consumed by

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Friday, October 8, 2010 9:58 am
By Greg McBride, CFA · Bankrate.com

The monthly employment report for September was released this morning and the number that gets attention is minus 95,000. But that’s not the most significant number. Why? Because the government shed 159,000 positions, mostly temporary Census workers, distorting the figures. The most relevant number continues to be private sector job growth. The good news is

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Tuesday, September 21, 2010 5:23 pm
By Greg McBride, CFA · Bankrate.com

The Federal Open Market Committee’s statement issued this afternoon clearly conveyed a willingness to throw more money into the financial system with another round of quantitative easing, perhaps as soon as November. That is what the market expected from the Fed, and the Fed delivered. But what is most significant — and somewhat alarming — is

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Friday, August 27, 2010 12:06 pm
By Greg McBride, CFA · Bankrate.com

Not wanting to be alarmist, Ben Bernanke chose his words very carefully in this morning’s speech from Jackson Hole, Wyo. He didn’t announce, or even discuss, any new policy options, other than to debunk the notion that the Fed would try to engineer inflation. Yes, they’ll buy more securities if conditions warrant, but we already

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Wednesday, August 11, 2010 2:07 pm
By Greg McBride, CFA · Bankrate.com

Yesterday the Federal Reserve took a symbolic step in the direction of more accommodative financial conditions by announcing that they will reinvest proceeds from maturing bonds back into Treasury securities. This will keep money in the financial system and help keep a lid on long-term interest rates, such as mortgages. But this is a small

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Thursday, July 22, 2010 11:55 am
By Greg McBride, CFA · Bankrate.com

Here is a subject of relevance for retirement investors — given the decline in the stock market since May — recharacterizing your Roth IRA conversion. Recharacterization is the process of unwinding your previous conversion as if it never happened. Let’s say earlier this year you converted traditional IRA assets to a Roth, triggering a tax

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Tuesday, June 22, 2010 11:29 am
By Greg McBride, CFA · Bankrate.com

Existing home sales for May not only came in well below expectations, but below April levels. The significance here is that existing home sales are measured at closing, so a nice bump in sales was expected given the tax credit crowd that had signed contracts in March and April moving to the closing table in

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