The House Republican Conference policy team has come up with a document to fill you in on QE2 and what it means for America now. According the the document, "On November 3, 2010, the Federal Reserve announced a second round of quantitative easing (or “QE2”) through which the Fed will purchase $600 billion of U.S. Treasury securities." There are several key factors to keep in mind including the following:
A Dueling Mandate: QE2 is intended to keep interest rates low. The proximate justification for maintaining interest rates at low levels is that the nation’s high rate of unemployment compels the Fed to try to stimulate economic activity under its “dual mandate” to support full-employment output and price stability. However, this policy approach risks eroding the long-term value of the dollar and undervalues the economic impact of rising commodity prices denominated in dollars, as the prices of items such as food and gasoline increase steadily. Moreover, many credit an excessively low interest rate environment with leading to financial market weakness vis-à-vis global credit misallocations in the first half of this decade, which precipitated the 2007-2008 financial crisis.
Read more details on QE2 in the policy document.