FOMC Minutes Not as Dovish as Some Expected, USD Ticks Up
The minutes from the recent FOMC meeting were not as dovish as some had expected and this seems to have encouraged some profit-taking on short dollar positions.
As widely expected the Fed to cut inflation and growth forecasts, but the downgrades were not as severe as anticipated. This year’s GDP forecast was trimmed to 3.0-3.5% from 3.2-3.7%. Still a 3-handle, which will seem downright optimistic to many. Next year’s growth forecast was cut to 3.5-4% from 3.4%-4.5%. This year’s inflation forecast was cut to 1.0-1.1% from 1.2-1.5% in April. The unemployment forecast was little changed at 9.2-9.5% from 91.-9.5% in April.
While there was some talk of action if needed, but the discussion seem vague with no specific actions proposed and the bar, as we suggested seems a bit high in so far as it would require "appreciably worsening" of the outlook.
Bottom line is that the market seems the Fed is unlikely to respond to the modest weakening of the economy. It is not hawkish enough to reverse the negative sentiment toward the dollar and it is not dovish enough to heighten expectations for a resumption of credit easing.