On Friday, Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell said that he was one of the majority of Fed officials who believe the central bank can taper bond purchases this year.
In his Jackson Hole speech, Powell revealed that at the FOMC’s July meeting, he, along with most of the participants, opined that if the economy evolved broadly as anticipated, it could be appropriate to start reducing the pace of asset purchases this year.
Powell said that the Fed's "substantial further progress" test on inflation had been met, adding "clear progress" had been made on a return to maximum employment.
The Fed is currently buying $80 billion of Treasurys and $40 billion of mortgage-backed securities each month.
Powell did not mention when the Fed might formally announce the taper. Officials are divided about whether to announce it at their meeting on Sept. 20-21 or wait until November. The Fed chairman also didn’t specify the pace of the tapering.