Chair Janet L. Yellen Semiannual Monetary Policy Report to the Congress
Before the Committee on Financial Services, U.S. House of Representatives, Washington, D.C.
February 11, 2014
此前的金融危机中，联邦公开市场委员会进行了货币政策通过调整其目标联邦基金利率。接近零的利率自2008年底以来，我们一直依赖少了两个传统工具 - 资产购置及远期指导 - 以帮助经济走向充分就业和价格稳定。这两个工具都放在较长期利率并支持资产价格的下行压力。反过来，这些更宽松的金融环境支持消费者支出，商业投资和住房建设，增加动力的恢复。
我们目前的资产购买计划始于2012年9月因有迹象显示经济复苏正在减弱，并在劳动力市场上的进展已经放缓。该委员会说，它将继续运行程序，直到有一个在价格稳定的背景下，在劳动力市场的前景大幅改善。在2013年年中，该委员会表示，如果向它的目标的进展情况继续如预期般，在购买每月步伐放缓可能会在今年晚些时候变得合适。去年十二月，该委员会判定对最大就业和劳动力市场状况的前景改善的累计进度保证适度减少采购的步伐，从$ 45十亿至400十亿每月的较长期国债，并从$ 39十亿美元的机构抵押贷款支持证券的35十亿元不等。在一月份的会议上，委员会决定将同一数量级的额外削减。如果传入的信息广泛支持的劳动力市场状况和通胀搬回朝其较长期的目标，持续改善委员会的期望，该委员会可能会降低资产购买的步伐，在今后的会议上进一步测量步骤。这就是说，购买产品，预置当然不是，和委员会的关于他们的步伐，决定将维持有赖于其对劳动力市场和通货膨胀，以及可能的疗效以及采购成本的评估展望。
该委员会强调，高度宽松的货币政策将维持适当的资产购买结束后相当长的时间。此外，该委员会自2012年12月表示，预计目前的低目标范围的联邦基金利率，只要失业率仍高于6-1/2％的至少是适当的，通胀预计将没有更多的超过半个百分点，高于我们2％的较长期目标，长期通胀预期保持良好锚定。越过这些临界值之一，将不会自动提示的增加联邦基金利率，但只有反而表明它已成为适宜委员会考虑对经济前景更广阔是否足以支持这样的增幅。在去年和12月又今年一月，该委员会表示，其目前的期望 - 基于广泛的劳动力市场状况，通胀压力和通胀预期的指标，并在金融发展的读数措施的评估 - 是这可能将是适当的，以维持目前的目标区间为联邦基金利率早已过了时间，以下6-1/2％的失业率下降，特别是如果通胀预期继续运行下面的2％的目标。我将致力于实现我们的双重任务两个部分：帮助经济恢复到充分就业和通胀回归至2％，同时确保它不会持续高于或低于这一水平上运行。
，我会完成与监管改革和监管措施，以加强金融体系的最新进展情况。十月份，美国联邦储备委员会提议的规则，加强对大型国际活跃金融机构的流动性头寸。1 连同其他联邦机构，董事会还发布了最终规则实施沃尔克规则，禁止银行机构从事短期某些金融工具的短期自营交易。2 在监管方面，下一轮的30大银行控股公司的年度资本压力测试正在进行中，我们预计在3月的报告结果。
管理和监督行动，包括那些导致大幅增加资本和流动性在银行部门，使我们的金融体系更有弹性。不过，重要的任务摆在面前。在短期内，我们预计最终确定实施增强了多德 - 弗兰克华尔街改革和消费者保护法第165条规定的审慎标准的规则。我们也正在努力敲定拟议的规则加强杠杆率标准，美国的，具有系统重要性的全球性银行。我们预计发出建议，以风险为基础的资本附加费的银行以及为长期债务的要求，以帮助确保这些机构能解决的。此外，我们正在努力推动提案的利润率noncleared衍生物，具有新的全球框架一致，并正在评估可能的措施，以解决短期批发融资相关的金融稳定风险。我们会继续留意新出现的风险，其中包括仔细观察，看是否监管改革工作打算。
Chairman Hensarling, Ranking Member Waters and other members of the Committee, I am pleased to present the Federal Reserve's semiannual Monetary Policy Report to the Congress. In my remarks today, I will discuss the current economic situation and outlook before turning to monetary policy. I will conclude with an update on our continuing work on regulatory reform.
First, let me acknowledge the important contributions of Chairman Bernanke. His leadership helped make our economy and financial system stronger and ensured that the Federal Reserve is transparent and accountable. I pledge to continue that work.
Current Economic Situation and Outlook
The economic recovery gained greater traction in the second half of last year. Real gross domestic product (GDP) is currently estimated to have risen at an average annual rate of more than 3-1/2 percent in the third and fourth quarters, up from a 1-3/4 percent pace in the first half. The pickup in economic activity has fueled further progress in the labor market. About 1-1/4 million jobs have been added to payrolls since the previous Monetary Policy Report last July, and 3-1/4 million have been added since August 2012, the month before the Federal Reserve began a new round of asset purchases to add momentum to the recovery. The unemployment rate has fallen nearly a percentage point since the middle of last year and 1-1/2 percentage points since the beginning of the current asset purchase program. Nevertheless, the recovery in the labor market is far from complete. The unemployment rate is still well above levels that Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) participants estimate is consistent with maximum sustainable employment. Those out of a job for more than six months continue to make up an unusually large fraction of the unemployed, and the number of people who are working part time but would prefer a full-time job remains very high. These observations underscore the importance of considering more than the unemployment rate when evaluating the condition of the U.S. labor market.
Among the major components of GDP, household and business spending growth stepped up during the second half of last year. Early in 2013, growth in consumer spending was restrained by changes in fiscal policy. As this restraint abated during the second half of the year, household spending accelerated, supported by job gains and by rising home values and equity prices. Similarly, growth in business investment started off slowly last year but then picked up during the second half, reflecting improving sales prospects, greater confidence, and still-favorable financing conditions. In contrast, the recovery in the housing sector slowed in the wake of last year's increase in mortgage rates.
Inflation remained low as the economy picked up strength, with both the headline and core personal consumption expenditures, or PCE, price indexes rising only about 1 percent last year, well below the FOMC's 2 percent objective for inflation over the longer run. Some of the recent softness reflects factors that seem likely to prove transitory, including falling prices for crude oil and declines in non-oil import prices.
My colleagues on the FOMC and I anticipate that economic activity and employment will expand at a moderate pace this year and next, the unemployment rate will continue to decline toward its longer-run sustainable level, and inflation will move back toward 2 percent over coming years. We have been watching closely the recent volatility in global financial markets. Our sense is that at this stage these developments do not pose a substantial risk to the U.S. economic outlook. We will, of course, continue to monitor the situation.
Turning to monetary policy, let me emphasize that I expect a great deal of continuity in the FOMC's approach to monetary policy. I served on the Committee as we formulated our current policy strategy and I strongly support that strategy, which is designed to fulfill the Federal Reserve's statutory mandate of maximum employment and price stability.
Prior to the financial crisis, the FOMC carried out monetary policy by adjusting its target for the federal funds rate. With that rate near zero since late 2008, we have relied on two less-traditional tools--asset purchases and forward guidance--to help the economy move toward maximum employment and price stability. Both tools put downward pressure on longer-term interest rates and support asset prices. In turn, these more accommodative financial conditions support consumer spending, business investment, and housing construction, adding impetus to the recovery.
Our current program of asset purchases began in September 2012 amid signs that the recovery was weakening and progress in the labor market had slowed. The Committee said that it would continue the program until there was a substantial improvement in the outlook for the labor market in a context of price stability. In mid-2013, the Committee indicated that if progress toward its objectives continued as expected, a moderation in the monthly pace of purchases would likely become appropriate later in the year. In December, the Committee judged that the cumulative progress toward maximum employment and the improvement in the outlook for labor market conditions warranted a modest reduction in the pace of purchases, from $45 billion to $40 billion per month of longer-term Treasury securities and from $40 billion to $35 billion per month of agency mortgage-backed securities. At its January meeting, the Committee decided to make additional reductions of the same magnitude. If incoming information broadly supports the Committee's expectation of ongoing improvement in labor market conditions and inflation moving back toward its longer-run objective, the Committee will likely reduce the pace of asset purchases in further measured steps at future meetings. That said, purchases are not on a preset course, and the Committee's decisions about their pace will remain contingent on its outlook for the labor market and inflation as well as its assessment of the likely efficacy and costs of such purchases.
The Committee has emphasized that a highly accommodative policy will remain appropriate for a considerable time after asset purchases end. In addition, the Committee has said since December 2012 that it expects the current low target range for the federal funds rate to be appropriate at least as long as the unemployment rate remains above 6-1/2 percent, inflation is projected to be no more than a half percentage point above our 2 percent longer-run goal, and longer-term inflation expectations remain well anchored. Crossing one of these thresholds will not automatically prompt an increase in the federal funds rate, but will instead indicate only that it had become appropriate for the Committee to consider whether the broader economic outlook would justify such an increase. In December of last year and again this January, the Committee said that its current expectation--based on its assessment of a broad range of measures of labor market conditions, indicators of inflation pressures and inflation expectations, and readings on financial developments--is that it likely will be appropriate to maintain the current target range for the federal funds rate well past the time that the unemployment rate declines below 6-1/2 percent, especially if projected inflation continues to run below the 2 percent goal. I am committed to achieving both parts of our dual mandate: helping the economy return to full employment and returning inflation to 2 percent while ensuring that it does not run persistently above or below that level.
Strengthening the Financial System
I will finish with an update on progress on regulatory reforms and supervisory actions to strengthen the financial system. In October, the Federal Reserve Board proposed a rule to strengthen the liquidity positions of large and internationally active financial institutions.1 Together with other federal agencies, the Board also issued a final rule implementing the Volcker rule, which prohibits banking firms from engaging in short-term proprietary trading of certain financial instruments.2 On the supervisory front, the next round of annual capital stress tests of the largest 30 bank holding companies is under way, and we expect to report results in March.
Regulatory and supervisory actions, including those that are leading to substantial increases in capital and liquidity in the banking sector, are making our financial system more resilient. Still, important tasks lie ahead. In the near term, we expect to finalize the rules implementing enhanced prudential standards mandated by section 165 of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act. We also are working to finalize the proposed rule strengthening the leverage ratio standards for U.S.-based, systemically important global banks. We expect to issue proposals for a risk-based capital surcharge for those banks as well as for a long-term debt requirement to help ensure that these organizations can be resolved. In addition, we are working to advance proposals on margins for noncleared derivatives, consistent with a new global framework, and are evaluating possible measures to address financial stability risks associated with short-term wholesale funding. We will continue to monitor for emerging risks, including watching carefully to see if the regulatory reforms work as intended.
Since the financial crisis and the depths of the recession, substantial progress has been made in restoring the economy to health and in strengthening the financial system. Still, there is more to do. Too many Americans remain unemployed, inflation remains below our longer-run objective, and the work of making the financial system more robust has not yet been completed. I look forward to working with my colleagues and many others to carry out the important mission you have given the Federal Reserve.
Thank you. I would be pleased to take your questions.