The Fed Officially Announces Big Bond-Buying Change

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Posted To: MBS Commentary

Market participants sensed that the Fed was suddenly changing its tune with respect to its balance sheet back in January. The balance sheet primarily refers to all the bonds the Fed purchased as a part of the various Quantitative Easing plans conducted throughout the recovery to the Great Recession. At the time, those QE plans technically involved "printing money." But it wasn't just money dropped from helicopters. The money was used to buy investments–in this case Treasury and Mortgage-Backed-Securities debt. Those bonds earn the Fed some income and they also get the principal returned when the bonds mature. The Fed HAD been using that incoming principal to buy more of the same bonds until 2018, when they began letting the balance sheet "runoff" by a controlled amount…(read more)

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