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Bernanke Talks, Confidence Drops

In a testament before the Senate earlier today, Federal Reserve Board chair Ben S. Bernanke predicted a "sluggish" economic forecast for the next several months; though a pick-me-up will follow, he claimed, the possibility of further adjustments to the federal funding rate (including the recent increase in conforming loan borrowing limits) is still distinct. Though he declined to comment on what some see as an imminent recession, he did spew bile over recent downturns in unemployment, the mortgage crisis, the stock market, the strength of the dollar— to name a few concerns. Outlook: not impossible, but rather bleak. [NY Times]