talked itself into a position where it would arouse suspicions if it did not start buying fewer bonds in September, say $75 billion a month instead of $85 billion.
"At the moment, expect tapering to begin in the middle of September; don't expect it to be terribly disruptive to financial markets," New York-based Webman said.
JAPAN AND GERMANY LOOKING UP
Statistics this week from developed economies should partly allay another concern voiced in the Fed minutes - that America's export markets were sluggish.
Japan, responding to aggressive monetary stimulus and a weaker yen, is forecast to report a rebound in industrial output and household spending alongside an acceleration in consumer price inflation - just as the Bank of Japan wishes.
In Germany, economists are pencilling in a rise in the IFO business climate index for August to 107.0 from 106.2 as well as a solid rise in retail sales and a dip in the number of jobless.
After data on Friday showed Germany's 0.7 percent rise in second-quarter GDP was driven by domestic demand, including a rebound in business spending, Thomas Harjes with Barclays in Frankfurt said he expected Europe's largest economy to maintain its underlying 2 percent annualised growth rate through 2014.
"Corporate capital investment should continue a moderate recovery unless the euro area crisis intensifies again, or global demand, especially from China, is significantly weaker than expected," Harjes said in a note.
The data flow from China has in fact improved lately, and economists expect a modest rise in the official manufacturing purchasing managers' index, due on September 1, to 50.5 from 50.3.
That would be welcome news to China's emerging-market trading partners. The currencies of India, Brazil and Indonesia among others have tumbled due to growth worries and a looming end to ever more cheap dollars printed by the Fed - opening up a negative feedback loop for Bernanke to bear in mind.
Derry Pickford, a macro analyst with Ashburton in London, said investors might be underestimating the potential impact of emerging-market woes on U.S. and European profitability.
"The fact that country-specific emerging market shocks have coincided with tapering talk has created a bit of a perfect storm for emerging markets," he said.