April 27, 2011
Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke on Wednesday will likely use his first-ever news conference on monetary policy to hammer home the case for a patient approach to withdrawing the central bank’s extensive support for theU.S. economy.
Following a two-day Fed policy meeting, Bernanke will face the press in the first regularly scheduled news conference by a Fed chairman in the central bank’s 97-year history.
He is expected to use the occasion to amplify the consensus view at the central bank that the economy still needs the Fed’s monetary policy support. That consensus has been challenged by a number of hawkish Fed officials who worry the U.S. central bank might wait too long to raise interest rates.
The Fed is lagging other central banks in tightening financial conditions. The European Central Bank raised benchmark rates earlier this month, a move that helped the U.S. dollar hit a 16-month low against the euro on Tuesday.