Central banks meet, ability to pilot economies in doubt

April 26, 2015 7:21 PM

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Central banks meet, ability to pilot economies in doubt

Most central banks have been easing policy since the start of the year and are set to do more, but it still isn't clear whether that new activism, which has pushed stock markets to record highs, will help the global economy much. Several meet this week to set policy, including the U.S. Federal Reserve, the Bank of Japan and Sweden's Riksbank, which all have turned to government bond purchases as stimulus after running out of interest rates to cut. Yet recent easing - and the halving of oil prices, which was meant to be a windfall for consumers - have not changed the global outlook much, according to Reuters polls of hundreds of economists published last week.

The Fed shut its quantitative easing (QE) program just over six months ago. But it seems likely it will be forced to wait until later this year, instead of June as was expected a short time ago, before raising rates from record lows. A disappointing start to the year from another punishing winter an...

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