WASHINGTON , Jan. 8 -- ( Kyodo ) _ Some policymakers at the U.S. Federal Reserve think the central bank should terminate its asset buying program, a part of its stimulus, "relatively quickly," according to the minutes of the Dec. 17-18 meeting released Wednesday. In the meeting, the Fed decided to begin reducing the size of the asset purchasing program starting January, with outgoing Chairman Ben Bernanke saying the central bank could terminate it by the end of 2014 if economic conditions permit. According to the minutes, many of the participants in the Federal Open Market Committee meeting who backed the decision to scale back the program "favored a modest initial reduction." But some other participants, including those without voting rights, "preferred a larger reduction in purchases and future reductions that would bring the program to a close relatively quickly," the minutes said. The Fed decided to wind down the amount of purchases of long-term Treasury bonds and agency mortgage-backed securities by $10 billion to $75 billion each month. It launched the asset buying program in September 2012 as an open-ended program. The decision marked the beginning of a departure from a series of quantitative easing measures the Fed has taken to prop up the economy since the financial crisis erupted in 2008 after the collapse of the U.S. investment bank Lehman Brothers Holdings Inc.
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