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The Economy in Perspective

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Behind the curve … Despite the Federal Open Market Committee’s June 30 decision to increase its federal funds rate target by 25 basis points, some people still wonder whether or not the Committee is “behind the curve.” What might they be thinking? Used one way, this idiom implies a lower-than-average score or performance, in the sense of falling below the mean on a test that is graded on the curve. Alternatively, the expression implies lagging behind the expected pace of action, in the sense of following a trajectory that falls below an idealized curve plotted on graph paper. Neither usage is flattering—both connote suboptimal performance.

Suggested citation: "The Economy in Perspective," Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland, Economic Trends, no. 04-07, pp. 01, 07.01.2004.

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