July 30, 2012
Weak U.S. data and mounting euro-zone concerns have raised expectations that the U.S. Federal Reserve will embark on another bout of bond-buying to stimulate the economy.
But Fed watchers surveyed by Dow Jones Newswires generally feel the central bank isn’t ready to launch a third round of so-called quantitative easing, or QE3, just yet. Most say they believe such an announcement is unlikely at Wednesday’s conclusion of the Fed’s two-day policy meeting.
A key factor in that cautious assessment: Friday’s report that U.S. gross domestic product expanded at an annual rate of 1.5% in the second quarter. Although that is far from a stellar economic performance, it beat forecasts of a 1.4% gain and, for many, was strong enough to suggest the Fed’s Open Market Committee would wait rather than pull the QE3 trigger at this week’s meeting.