Economic weakness should continue in the near term, with monetary policy easing and the fiscal stimulus package offsetting some of the weakness, but “significant downside risks” could hinder the economy, Federal Reserve Board governor Frederic S. Mishkin told a National Association of Business Economics conference yesterday.

“I continue to expect a period of economic weakness in the near term that should be offset to a degree in future quarters by the monetary easing already in place and the fiscal stimulus package,” he said, according to prepared text of his remarks, which were released by the Fed.

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