Ben Bernanke, chairman of the Federal Reserve, is slowly warming to the idea of selling some of the central bank's $1.25 trillion in mortgage securities. In testimony before the House Financial Services Committee, Bernanke said the Fed "has the option of redeeming or selling securities" purchased during the economic crisis. He also said that "restoring the size and composition of the balance sheet to a more normal configuration is a longer-term objective of our policies."

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