A Federal Reserve official says that if the government shutdown continues, the Fed is less likely to wind back its $85bn-per-month bond-buying program at its October meeting.
“If this lasts for several more days, by the end of October we will still be looking at a very ambiguous situation,” Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta President Dennis Lockhart told the Wall Street Journal Thursday.
Lockhart told the Journal that the loss of economic data in the wake of the shutdown makes it harder to judge the state of the economy.
“Less data is not helpful in gauging where the economy is and where it’s going,” he said.
Lockhart also worried that the shutdown could slow economic growth.
“It’s a little early to draw any conclusions,” he told the Journal. “If it’s protracted then I would expect that there would be some measurable impact at least on fourth-quarter growth.”