Fed Dealer Survey Showed Falling Odds of More Bond Buying

The Federal Reserve Bank of New York’s survey of primary dealers conducted before policy makers met last month showed that the firms saw the probability of another round of bond buying declining from January.

The median respondent saw a 50 percent chance that the Fed would expand its balance sheet through securities purchases within one year, down from 55 percent odds in the survey conducted before the Federal Open Market Committee’s Jan. 24-25 meeting, results released today by the New York Fed showed.

Fed policy makers last month voted to maintain their plan to keep interest rates low through at least late 2014 while upgrading their assessment of the economy. They called for additional stimulus only “if the economy lost momentum” or if inflation stays below their 2 percent inflation target, according to minutes of the FOMC’s March 13 meeting released yesterday in Washington.

Bond dealers pushed back their expectations for the Fed to raise its benchmark interest rate. The median among the predictions for the timing of the first increase was during the third quarter of 2014, compared with the second quarter of 2014 in the January survey, the results showed.

The Fed has kept its benchmark rate near zero since December 2008.

To contact the reporter on this story: Caroline Salas Gage in New York at csalas1@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Christopher Wellisz at cwellisz@bloomberg.net

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