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     WASHINGTON (MNI) - The following is a summary of significant policy
comments from members of the Federal Reserve's policymaking Federal Open Market
Committee since their last meeting Sept. 19-20.
     NOTE: * denotes member is an FOMC voter in 2017. ** denotes comments made
exclusively to MNI.
     Loretta Mester (Cleveland): "My forecast for the economy would suggest that
we need an upwardly-tilted funds rate path," and my forecast is "probably a
little stronger than the median path." (Oct. 20)
     John Williams (San Francisco): "My own view is we want to continue this
gradual pace of increase. One more rate increase in December and three more next
year is a pretty good starting point." (Oct. 17)
     Janet Yellen (Chair*): "We continue to expect that the ongoing strength of
the economy will warrant gradual increases in that rate to sustain a healthy
labor market and stabilize inflation around our 2% longer-run objective." (Oct.
     Eric Rosengren (Boston**): "One (rate increase) every quarter seems pretty
reasonable unless inflation data ends up being weaker than I'm anticipating."
(Oct. 14) 
     Robert Kaplan (Dallas*): "I believe the Fed should be patient and gradual
in removing accommodation." (Oct. 13)
     Raphael Bostic (Atlanta): "I haven't seen things that suggest that we
should move off of that (2017 SEP median) forecast, but I do understand that
there are some areas of uncertainty." (Oct. 13)
     James Bullard (St. Louis): "My guess is, if the data comes in as expected,
it would be appropriate to raise rates in December." (Oct. 12)
     Jerome Powell (Governor*): Policy normalization "has been and should
continue to be gradual," as long as the U.S. economy evolves roughly as
expected. (Oct. 12)
     Charles Evans (Chicago*): "There's room for a very honest discussion later
this year as to whether or not it's the right time to raise rates. I really
don't see any harm in waiting longer to take more stock of the inflation
situation." (Oct. 11)
     Esther George (Kansas City): "Waiting for solid evidence that inflation
will reach 2% before taking further steps to remove accommodation carries risks
of overheating the economy, fostering financial instability, and perhaps putting
in motion an undesirable increase in inflation. (Oct. 11)
     William Dudley (New York*): "Even though inflation is currently somewhat
below our longer-run objective, I judge that it is still appropriate to continue
to remove monetary policy accommodation gradually." (Oct. 6)
     Neel Kashkari (Minneapolis*): "My preference would be not to raise rates
again until we actually hit 2% core PCE inflation on a 12-month basis, unless we
have seen a large drop in the headline unemployment rate signaling that we have
used up remaining labor market slack, or a surprise increase in inflation
expectations." (Oct. 2)
     Patrick Harker (Philadelphia*): "I'm still penciling in an increase in
December and three increases for '18, assuming that inflation comes back."
(Sept. 29)
     Williams (San Francisco): "I view both inflation picking up faster than
expected in early 2017 and now the pullback as just part of the variability
that's going to happen. I don't see any signs that somehow the inflation process
is fundamentally changed." (Oct. 17)
     Yellen (Chair*): "With the ongoing strengthening of the labor markets, I
expect inflation to move higher next year. Most of my colleagues on the FOMC
agree." (Oct. 15)
     Rosengren (Boston**): "We're starting to see that tightness in the labor
market appear in wages. We haven't seen it appear in prices yet but my
expectation is we'll see it over the next year or two a little more clearly than
we have to date." (Oct. 14)
     Kaplan (Dallas*): "As the labor market tightens I expect cyclical pressures
(on inflation) to keep building but I'm conscious of the fact that they're being
offset to some extent by structural factors" such as technology and
globalization. (Oct. 13)
     Lael Brainard (Governor*): "Frequent or extended periods of low inflation
run the risk of pulling down private-sector inflation expectations, which could
amplify the degree and persistence of shortfalls." (Oct. 12) 
     Bullard (St. Louis): "Inflation's low. I think it's expected to remain low
here in the U.S. and abroad. We should accept the fact that real interest rates
are pretty low." (Oct. 12)
     Evans (Chicago*): "We should be willing to push inflation above 2%" and "I
don't think we should fear 2.5% inflation." (Oct. 11)
     George (Kansas City): "It seems reasonable to expect that inflation will
gradually rise as labor markets tighten further and the effects of past oil
price declines, dollar appreciation, and idiosyncratic price movements fade."
(Oct. 11)
     Bostic (Atlanta): "With a relatively strong and still-improving labor
market and stable inflation expectations, I am looking for inflation to drift up
to 2% over the next year or so." (Oct. 11)
     Dudley (New York*): "While some of this year's shortfall can be explained
by one-off factors -- such as the sharp fall in prices for cellular phone
service -- its persistence suggests that more fundamental structural changes may
also be playing a role." (Oct. 6)
     Kashkari (Minneapolis*): "Our policy should focus on supporting inflation
to ensure that we are on track to return to our 2 percent target." (Oct. 2)
     Harker (Philadelphia*): "If we start to see wage acceleration, if we
continue to see a tight labor market, that would be the precursor to inflation.
So we don't need to see inflation itself, although it would be nice to see some
signs of that." (Sept. 29)
--MNI Washington Bureau; +1 202-371-2121; email:
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