A taperphobia epidemic has Wall Street in a panic yet again. “Taperphobia” is an irrational fear of common sense. Symptoms include a falling stock market, soaring bond yields and ongoing anxiety attacks. There is a cure, but it’s expensive – it costs at least $85 billion a month, but that’s enough to cure all of Wall Street and send the stock market soaring.
Taperphobia was discovered by Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke in May, when he invented a new definition for the word “taper,” using it to describe the gradual slowdown of quantitative easing (another phrase he invented, which translates to “buying bonds forever”).
Symptoms of taperphobia subsided through calm reassurances of ongoing bond buying to eternity, but they returned in October, because most economists had predicted with absolute certainty that tapering would begin then.
It didn’t, so taperphobia subsided again. But now, thanks to discussions by board members included in minutes of the Federal Reserve Board, many believe that tapering will begin soon.