Should the economy show signs of improvement and global conditions do not worsen, the Federal Reserve has indicated it will raise interest rates soon.
The above sentence could have been written after virtually any Federal Open Market Committee meeting over the past year, as officials have been looking for reasons to justify a change in monetary policy.
For whatever reason, the sentiment seems to have taken on greater significance since it was expressed after this week's FOMC gathering.
Perhaps it's because there is only one more meeting left in a year that at one time was almost certain to end with a rate hike, or maybe it really was a few tweaks in the statement issued afterward. In either event, the buzz around Wall Street was that the Fed is leaning strongly toward hiking in December.
Ultimately, though, what may transpire is that markets have just been treated to the latest sleight of hand by a central bank waiting for an ideal time to hike that may never come.