WASHINGTON -- Business economists are almost equally divided over whether the Federal Reserve will pare back bond purchases at the current pace through year's end or take a small breather to let the economy recover further.
The views were unveiled Monday by the National Association for Business Economics. The NABE conducted its twice-a-year survey of 230 members between Jan. 30 and Feb. 6, before Janet Yellen's first appearance before Congress as Fed chair.
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About 43 percent of NABE members thought the Fed would complete its so-called "tapering" in the fourth quarter. About 42 percent thought the tapering would finish in 2015 or later.
At each of the last two policy meetings, the Fed cut bond purchases by $10 billion to the current pace of $65 billion a month. There are seven meetings left in 2014.