Federal Reserve building pedestrians
A view of the U.S. Federal Reserve building in Washington, D.C. Reuters

In a speech to the Council on Foreign Relations Friday, Federal Reserve Bank Governor Jeremy Stein told the markets that the Fed purposely chose not to set targets for when the bank might ease its current asset purchases of $85 billion a month.

The markets have come out and asked what conditions the Fed are waiting for before they reduce and cease the purchases.

"The best approach is for the [Fed] to be clear that in making a decision in, say, September, it will give primary weight to the large stock of news that has accumulated since the inception of the program and will not be unduly influenced by whatever data releases arrive in the few weeks before the meeting -- as salient as these releases may appear to be to market participants," Stein said.

Stein went on to say that bad news in September might not influence any future decision, but if that were furthered by poor shows in October and November, it would suggest that the goal of 7 percent unemployment is further away, so the remainder of the program would be extended.