Yellen plays down hawkish lean to FOMC statement, but economy is improving

|By:, SA News Editor

Janet Yellen opens her press conference seemingly quickly trying to dissuade thoughts that the FOMC action today was a hawkish one. She says the change in forward guidance - dropping the 6.5% unemployment rate threshold - does not reflect a change in "policy intentions." Nevertheless, she says, broader labor market indicators (the U-6 rate has dropped faster and labor force participation has ticked higher) are improving even faster than headline unemployment would suggest. She again mentions the weather, which is making an accurate assessment of the economy a more difficult job. The 10-year yield continues higher, now ahead 9 bps to 2.76%.

Webcast, Hilsenrath blog

Of interest from the FOMC statement: The dissenter was one of the louder doves, Minneapolis' Narayana Kocherlakota, who fells the Committee is giving short shrift to getting the inflation rate back to its 2% target.

Previous coverage of FOMC meeting