WASHINGTON — The Federal Reserve says it will make a fourth $10 billion cut in its monthly bond purchases to $45 billion because it thinks the U.S. job market needs less help from the Fed.
It is also reaffirming its plan to keep short-term interest rates low to support the economy “for a considerable time” after its bond purchases end, likely late this year.
The Fed’s guidance, issued in a statement after a two-day meeting, had been expected. It conforms to goals that Chair Janet Yellen noted in a speech this month. She said the Fed’s rate policies must be flexible enough to meet unexpected economic challenges.
The Fed sounded a more upbeat note on the economy, saying it had picked up recently after slowing sharply during the winter.