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Wednesday is Bernanke Day   April 26th, 2011
Are you ready?       

 
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Tomorrow, Wednesday April 27th, is Bernanke Day--the day Federal Reserve Chairman Bernanke holds a post-Fed meeting press conference. This is the first time a Fed chairman has done this. Are you ready?

I'm a little baffled as to why Bernanke decided to hold a press conference immediately following a Fed policy meeting. As far as I've read, no-one seems to think Bernanke will say anything surprising. Which kind of raises the question: Why have a press conference at all?

Pehaps the Federal Reserve is planning some action that will surprise the markets. Or perhaps they're going to say they're going to stop QE2 as planned... which the market apparently expects, but will still be disappointed to hear. They're releasing the Fed statement a couple hours earlier than usual, and Bernanke takes the microphone about two hours after the statement is released--so that's plenty of time for markets to react to whatever is in the Fed statement. Is it possible that the chairman wants to be able to immediately soothe the market?

Another possibility is that the Federal Reserve is going to take some action with which Bernanke doesn't agree, and he wants to be able to present a dissenting opinion. This seems unlikely. The last thing we need is the chairman of the Federal Reserve undermining the decisions of the Federal Reserve with the biggest microphone available.

The final possibility would seem to be that there's absolutely no reason for a press conference. Are they, perhaps, just trying to establish a new precedent where the Fed chief will always have a press conference after the Fed meetings so that in the future, when it's necessary, it won't be anything out of the ordinary? If so, Bernanke's press conference will be a spectacle in tip-toeing. He'll want to succeed at saying absolutely nothing that's not in the already-released Fed report. One wrong word--or a word that contradicts the Fed statement--and he could send a market or two into a tailspin.

So anyone want to place any bets on which market(s) Bernanke is going to destroy tomorrow? The stock market? The bond market? The gold/silver market? Is he going to try to say nothing so as not to bother any market? Or will he try to do say nothing but actually mumble the wrong words and, in the process, destroy a couple markets?

I have no idea, but I have my stop loss orders in place, just in case.

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