Fed Chair Powell says COVID surge a concern, economy still needs support

FILE PHOTO: Federal Reserve Board Chairman Jerome Powell testifies during a Senate’s Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs hearing examining the quarterly CARES Act report to Congress, in Washington, DC, U.S., September 24, 2020. Drew Angerer/Pool via REUTERS/File Photo

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The surge in coronavirus cases is a big concern for an economic recovery that still has a “long way to go,” and the economy will continue to need support from both fiscal and monetary policy, Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell said on Tuesday.

The Fed is committed to “using all of our tools to support the recovery for as long as it takes until the job is well and truly done,” Powell said at a virtual Bay Area Council event, adding that the economy likely needs more fiscal support as well. The current rise in cases and hospitalizations due to the novel coronavirus is “very much a concern” because it could scare people from engaging in economic activity and slow the economy, he said.

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