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As expected, the Federal Open Market Committee used their September 22 Monetary Policy Decision to tee up a reduction in monetary stimulus. The key phrase from their monetary policy statement reads, “A moderation in the pace of asset purchases may soon be warranted.” Barring big economic surprises, the Federal Reserve will likely announce a slower pace of purchases of government-backed bonds (“tapering the QE program”) at the next scheduled Open Market Committee decision on November 3. The taper is most likely to conclude by mid-2022. The September Survey of Economic Projections a.k.a. dot plot shows that many FOMC members have pulled forward the timing of when they believe it will be appropriate to raise the fed funds rate from the previous dot plot published in June. Half of the FOMC see an initial rate hike in 2023 or later, and half see it in 2022. The dots include all the Federal Reserve Board governors and the Regional Fed Bank presidents. Governors vote every meeting and are more dovish than the regional Fed presidents, who vote on a rotating basis. Because of this the median dot skews a little more hawkish than the median vote at an FOMC decision. Thus, a majority of the voting members of the FOMC likely still see it appropriate to wait until 2023 to raise the policy rate.Subscribe to Comments