Federal Reserve officials discussed at their meeting three weeks ago ending the reduction of bonds on the central bank's balance sheet before the end of 2019, according to minutes released Wednesday.
"Almost all participants thought that it would be desirable to announce before too long a plan to stop reducing the Federal Reserve's asset holdings later this year. Such an announcement would provide more certainty about the process for completing the normalization of the size of the Federal Reserve's balance sheet," the document said.
Stocks looked for direction after the minutes as the market parsed through the meeting summary.
The minutes showed extensive discussion of market conditions, particularly on the emphasis that Fed actions were having on prices of risky assets like stocks and corporate bonds.
"Bottom line, while the Fed I believe clearly had room for the current pause because of the economic slowdown going on overseas, it should also be clear to everyone that they are mostly beholden to asset prices, both the stock market and credit spreads with that driving policy," Peter Boockvar, chief investment officer at Bleakley Advisory Group, said in a note.