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Bernanke Resets Policy by Doing Nothing as Markets Soar

Ben S. Bernanke reinforced his standing as the most activist Federal Reserve chairman in history by doing the unexpected: nothing.

The policy-setting Federal Open Market Committee yesterday refrained from reducing the $85 billion pace of its monthly securities buying, sending stocks to record highs and triggering the biggest rally in Treasuries since 2011 as investors repositioned for a more accommodative central bank. Bernanke said the Fed must determine its policies based on “what’s needed for the economy,” even if it surprises markets.