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WASHINGTON (AP) — Even a few weeks can make a difference and the Federal Reserve can attest to that as it begins a two-day meeting today.
When the Fed last met in mid-September, almost everyone expected it to start reducing the stimulus it's given the U.S. economy. The Fed pulled a surprise and left in place its policy of buying $85 billion-a-month in Treasury and mortgage bonds. Since then, the economic recovery has shown signs of struggling and this week's meeting carries little expectation that the Fed will do any tinkering with its stimulus policy.
After a 16-day partial government shutdown and a batch of tepid data, many analysts now predict the Fed will maintain the pace of its bond purchases into next year.
By then, Fed members expect to have seen stronger job growth. They also expect Congress to have resolved its budget impasse.