Fed's Quarles sees formidable, complex challenge ahead

FILE PHOTO: Federal Reserve Vice Chairman for Supervision Randal Quarles addresses the Economic Club of New York in New York City, U.S., October 18, 2018. REUTERS/Brendan McDermid/File Photo

(Reuters) - Federal Reserve Governor Randal Quarles said on Monday that while the initial market stress from the coronavirus crisis has passed, a “distinct, formidable, and complex” challenge remains.

“The surprise of the COVID event is gone, replaced by a clearer view of its economic consequences,” Quarles said in testimony prepared for a Congressional appearance Tuesday, adding that businesses and households continue to face significant burdens, borne unevenly.

“I am confident that we will work through them together, support those hardest hit, and ensure that our economic wounds do not become scars,” Quarles said, repeating the Fed’s pledge to use its full range of tools to support the economy for as long as it takes.

Reporting by Ann Saphir; Editing by Chris Reese