Tags: Blinder | Fed | easing | 2015

Blinder: Fed Won’t End Easing Before 2015

Tuesday, 29 Jan 2013 10:13 AM

By Dan Weil

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While some officials at the Federal Reserve already are calling for the central bank to halt or slow its quantitative easing later this year, that’s not going to happen, says former Fed Vice Chairman Alan Blinder.

“It’s never too soon to start thinking about it [a reversal of the easing.] But I’d be very surprised if the Fed even starts on its exit in 2013,” he tells Yahoo. “I wouldn’t even bet on 2014.”

The Fed’s policymaking Federal Open Market Committee meets Tuesday and Wednesday.

Editor's Note: Economist Unapologetically Calls Out Bernanke, Obama for Mishandling Economy. See What They Did

Blinder doesn’t think the economy or inflation will grow fast enough to spark a retreat by the Fed, which has said it would leave interest rates near zero until unemployment drops to 6.5 percent and inflation is at 2 percent. The rate stood at 7.8 percent in December.

Blinder forecasts economic growth of 2.5 percent this year, and that assumes no crisis over the debt ceiling.

Meanwhile, inflation totaled only 1.7 percent last year. “When I hear people say we’re building up to a 10 percent or 12 percent inflation rate, I just don’t know what they’re thinking,” Blinder says. “The only way that could happen would be utter and complete incompetence at the Fed.”

All the Fed’s easing has pushed its balance sheet to a record $3 trillion. “You’re hard-pressed to find another example in history where the Fed pulled out all the stops to help a recovery along,” Michael Hanson, senior economist at Bank of America, tells Bloomberg.

Editor's Note: Economist Unapologetically Calls Out Bernanke, Obama for Mishandling Economy. See What They Did

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