WASHINGTON, March 6 Federal Reserve Bank of St
Louis President James Bullard had the biggest impact on bond
markets of all Fed policymakers in 2013, according to a new
Research by Macroeconomic Advisers showed Bullard, seen as a
policy centrist, beat former Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke for the
mantle of most market-moving U.S. central banker, although the
Fed chief had a bigger impact on a per-speech basis.
Bullard, a voter on monetary policy last year, moved the
10-year Treasury yield by a cumulative 29 basis points over the
year, which was marked by uncertainty about when the Fed would
start to unwind support for the economy.
Bullard rebuked colleagues for their decision in June to
announce a plan to reduce bond buying, saying inflation remained
too low to justify slowing purchases. He dissented from the
majority for the first time at that meeting. The Fed eventually
announced in December it would start to taper.
Bernanke, who left the Fed this year, racked up a cumulative
impact of 21 basis points. New Fed Chair Janet Yellen ranked
well down the table at 11 basis points, although she came in
third after Bernanke and Fed Governor Jeremy Stein in terms of
impact per speech.
The research showed Yellen's remarks carried more weight
once she was nominated for the top job, with an average impact
per speech of nearly three basis points, compared with 0.5
points per speech earlier in the year.
"This illustrates the weight the (Federal Open Market
Committee) chair carries, especially considering how little news
there was in her remarks," Macroeconomic Advisers economists
wrote in a note.
The most loquacious speaker of 2013 was outspoken hawk and
Dallas Fed President Richard Fisher, with 23 speeches or
interviews to Bullard's 22.
But markets tended to shrug off Fisher's comments as holding
few clues on the future direction of policy.
"President Fisher, the most frequent FOMC speaker in 2013,
was the least impactful on a per-speech basis. His ranking
likely reflects his out-of-consensus views, which tend to
provide less information on the direction of policy," the note
The award for "Market Neutrality" went to New York Fed
President William Dudley, who gave nine speeches or interviews
with a net impact on bonds of only three basis points.
"There were others whose net market effects were less than
President Dudley's, but we found it remarkable that he managed
to deliver relatively market-neutral policy-relevant speeches,
despite being one of the most influential members of the FOMC,"
the research note said.