Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke will testify the Joint Economic Committee of Congress at 10:00 AM ET today.
And that will be followed by the release of the minutes from the last Federal Open Market Committee.
The entire investing world will be listening for clues on how and when the Fed plans to scale back its aggressive monetary policy.
Art Cashin, UBS’s man on the New York Stock Exchange trading floor, has a preview of the Fed’s appearances in this morning’s Cashin’s Comments:
Bernanke – He will have to reassure that tapering is a discussion point but not an imminent strategy. It would be very helpful (but doubtful) if he discussed option alternatives as near term supply of Treasuries and MBS decreases. May be pushed a bit on goals and targets (unemployment, inflation, etc.).
FOMC Minutes – May be a bit stale since jobs/claims shifts happened after the meeting.
Consensus – Everybody and their respective siblings will be parsing every word from Mr. B. Markets at strong premiums to moving averages but bulls still have momentum. Be wary of rumours and stay very nimble.
Basically, if Bernanke and the Fed stray from expectations, we could see some volatility in the markets.
We’ll be following Bernanke live at BusinessInsider.com.