Is the Fed really driving up stock prices?

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A new study from the McKinsey Global Institute claims that there is little evidence to support the commonly held belief that the Federal Reserve's stimulus programs have boosted stock prices.

The study uses the measured language of consultant reports but the message most are taking from the report is clear enough: conventional wisdom about the effects of quantitative easing on equities is probably wrong. QE doesn't lift stocks.

"While corporations and governments clearly were winners, the McKinsey researchers found no evidence that the stimulus has caused the stock market to climb, as many strategists and economists contend," Nelson Schwartz of the New York Times writes on the Economix blog.