Tuesday marked an interesting day, with two more Fed presidents talking up Federal Reserve rate hikes coming sooner than expected. While William Dudley, President of the New York Federal Reserve, was a bit less hawkish, it was still the third such Fed president commenting about the possibility of rate hikes coming sooner rather than later.
In his remarks at the Regional Economic Press Briefing in New York City, Dudley made no such comments about the possibility of rate hike timing on Wednesday. It is hard to say that a do-over was being made, but some skeptics might think that Fed governors were told to pipe down on their rate hike timing comments.
Another consideration is that the Federal Open Market Committee is still only in a tapering mode for its bond buying. It seems unlikely that the rate hikes will take place while the Federal Reserve is still buying any new (i.e., not reinvested principal and interest from roll offs and maturities) Treasuries and mortgage-backed securities.
Dudley’s comments on Wednesday were restricted to the jobs and economic data of the New York Federal Reserve District. That is probably smart, at least if you own stocks. The stock market has said “thank you” by keeping the S&P 500 Index up 11 points and the Dow Jones industrial Average is still up about 125 points after about 45 minutes of trading.