Fed predicts weak recovery for several years
The Federal Reserve slashed its outlook for the U.S. economy for this year and 2011 and projected that it could take several years for the economy to return to health. According to minutes from the Fed's November 3 meeting released Tuesday, more than half of the central bank's policymakers thought it would take about five or six years for unemployment, growth and inflation to return to more normal levels. Other Fed members warned the full recovery could take even longer than that. The much weaker forecast is the major reason that policymakers decided earlier this month to announce a plan to try and jumpstart growth by pumping an additional $600 billion into the economy through the purchase of long-term bonds.