FOMC Leaves Interest Rates Unchanged

Despite the white noise surrounding the Bernanke confirmation lately, it’s business as usual at the Federal Open Market Committee meeting.

The Fed left interest rates unchanged (0 to ¼ percent) at its first meeting for 2010, and repeated its mantra to keep the funds rate “exceptionally low for an extended period.” Kansas City Fed President Thomas M. Hoenig, who claimed economic and financially conditions had improved substantially, was the sole dissenter on continuing the policy

The Fed also confirmed it plans to end its $1.25 trillion of mortgage-backed securities in March, although it left open the possibility of extending the program if conditions warrant

The “don’t rock the boat” strategy was expected, and the markets essentially shrugged off the news.

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