Chairman Ben S. Bernanke will probably reduce the Federal Reserve’s monthly bond buying in the fourth quarter to $50 billion from $85 billion as he begins to unwind record stimulus, economists said in a Bloomberg survey.

Policy makers must find a way to slow the pace of purchases enough to signal confidence the economy is strengthening without prompting a sudden rise in interest rates, said former Fed economists Michael Feroli and Joseph LaVorgna. They said that probably means the Fed, which concludes a policy meeting today, will follow a three-step strategy to wind down bond buying.

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