Bullard Says Fed Need Not Hurry to Taper QE With Inflation Low

Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis President James Bullard, who has backed the Fed’s $85 billion in monthly bond buying, said the central bank should take time to assess the U.S. economy and inflation before reducing the pace of bond purchases.

“I don’t think we have to be in any hurry,” Bullard said today in a CNBC interview from Jackson Hole, Wyoming. “Inflation is running low and we have got mixed data on the economy.”

“So I’d be cautious,” said Bullard, who votes on monetary policy this year. “We want to take our time and assess what’s going on before we make a move.”

Treasury yields hit two-year highs this week amid speculation the Federal Open Market Committee will slow its bond buying starting next month. Policy makers are debating when to begin reducing large-scale asset purchases, which they have pledged to maintain until the job market improves substantially.

“We can afford to be very deliberate in our decision making,” Bullard said.

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