Fed’s Powell: ‘Medical metrics’ most important data for U.S. economy now: CBS

US

FILE PHOTO: Federal Reserve Board Chairman Jerome Powell presents the Monetary Policy Report to Senate Banking Committee during a hearing on The Semiannual Monetary Policy Report to the Congress on Capitol Hill in Washington, U.S., February 12, 2020. REUTERS/Yuri Gripas/File Photo

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell said a U.S. economic recovery may stretch deep into next year and a full comeback may depend on a coronavirus vaccine.

“This economy will recover. It may take a while … It could stretch through the end of next year. We really don’t know,” Powell said in remarks aired on CBS’s “Face the Nation” as part of a longer prerecorded interview to be broadcast Sunday night on the network’s “60 Minutes” news show.

“Assuming there is not a second wave of the coronavirus, I think you will see the economy recover steadily through the second half of this year. For the economy to fully recover people will have to be fully confident and that may have to await the arrival of a vaccine.”

The Fed has approved a suite of programs to help businesses and financial markets continue functioning during the pandemic, and to try to limit the failure of firms and families during the fight against the virus.

Fed chairs use interviews on national television networks sparingly, but the 60 Minutes interview this evening will be his second since the U.S. central bank began putting its financial power behind the virus fight.

Reporting by Howard Schneider; Editing by Lisa Shumaker and Daniel Wallis

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