RICHMOND, Virginia (Reuters) - Two Federal Reserve officials voiced cautious optimism on Tuesday that the economy was on a lasting upswing, but they offered differing views on what that outlook ought to mean for the central bank’s controversial program of buying bonds to stimulate growth.
“At some point we will reduce the flow rate and end this program,” Charles Evans, president of the Chicago Federal Reserve, told reporters. “It could well be later in the year.”
Jeffrey Lacker, head of the Richmond Fed and who spoke in a joint appearance with Evans, said he had been impressed by the resilience of U.S. consumers during the first quarter, but was not yet ready to upgrade his forecast for growth a bit above 2 percent in 2013.
Lacker is a noted inflation hawk while Evans is known for his dovish posture on policy.
Reporting By Alister Bull; Editing by Leslie Adler