Federal Reserve: Recession Ending, Rates Left Alone

August 20, 2009

Source: Edmund L. Andrews, The New York Times

The Federal Reserve ended its policy-making meeting Wednesday (8-12-09) with the declaration that the recession is ending and it would move toward more normal policies.

The Fed said, "Economic activity is leveling out." It added that it expected inflation would remain "subdued for some time."

The Fed said it will keep the short-term key interest rate near zero, but it will end its program to buy $300 billion worth of Treasury bonds by the end of October. Buying bonds was one of the Fed's efforts to drive down the cost of home mortgages.

"In a way, it's more of a thumbs-up than if they had said they were continuing the Treasury-buying," said Edward McKelvey, an economist at Goldman Sachs. "They're saying that things are going according to plan, and that the policy is O.K."

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