Riddle Me This Batman Ben: When is a Tightening Not a Tightening?" When The Fed Says It Ain't!
Bullard: Discount Rate Move Part of Normalization, Market Idea that the Fed Hikes Rates in Late 2010 is Overblown
Lockhart: Discount Rate Move Doesn't Indicate What Fed May Do One Way or Another with Fed Funds Rate
Duke: Rise In Discount Rate Does Not Signal Change in Outlook for Monetary Policy
To Fed summarize, "Normally, we normalize rates in a normal way." Maybe I'm just from the Midwest and don't quite understand the high fallutin' monetary brainacs at the central bank.....But last time I checked when you raise a rate, it's called tightening.
There's a lot of potential behind the scenes DC action on this move.
Next week, US Senate Banking Committee Chairman Christopher Dodd is going to release his language on financial regulatory reform. It's likely to strip out much of the Fed's regulatory powers. Also, Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke will be testifying on the Fed's Monetary Policy Report before the House on Wednesday. Bernanke will face tough questions on the move as well as face the loss of Fed power from the Dodd bill. Bernanke will have to navigate this minefield or potentially lose more as the Dodd bill has amendments added to it.
Back to Bullard, what's amazing is that he went on to describe when the Fed will hike the Fed Funds rate and that it's coming sooner rather than later.
Here are the comments: Fed Tightening to be Data Dependent; Job Market Disappointing, But Improving, Will Get Better; Expect US Unemployment to Come Down Faster Than Other Nations. They've raised the Discount Rate, they're ending QE in March, and they are describing conditions as improving.
Whether it's Tiger or the Fed, actions speak louder than words.
Andrew B. BuschDirector,