The Federal Reserve released its market-influencing minutes of the Federal Open Market Committee five hours early, at 9 a.m. ET, because somebody messed up. The minutes had already gone out to trade groups and congressional staffers on Tuesday afternoon.
"The reason is they were inadvertently sent early to a list of individuals who normally receive the minutes by email shortly after their usual release time," a Fed spokesman said in a statement.
About 100 people received the report early, according to MarketWatch.
"The individuals on the distribution list -- primarily congressional employees and employees of trade organizations -- received the minutes shortly after 2 p.m. Tuesday," the Fed spokesman said.
The minutes themselves are couched in the same passive wording that makes it difficult to glean data and assign blame. The minutes, however, represent a range of opinions about what might happen if various scenarios should come about.
The FOMC projects that the economy should pick up going into 2015 and that inflation "would remain subdued." It further predicts that gross domestic product (GDP) would increase during that period and that unemployment would decline gradually.
The takeaway, according to a senior economist at BMO Capital markets, as reported by MarketWatch, is that quantitative easing is "becoming more mainstream."
The minutes and a summary are available at the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System's website.
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