Any decision must and will be “data driven,” central bankers keep repeating as the moment comes when they will start unwinding the trillion-dollar (or pound, or euro) asset-buying programs they have unleashed on the world economy in the last two years.

The Federal Reserve’s minutes of its July meeting, published today, will give an idea of the state of the debate among U.S. central bankers, and maybe—hope springs eternal—give markets a clearer indication of when a decision on the long-awaited “tapering” will come.

But if any decision must be driven by data, then data should speak clearly. To say the least, this isn’t quite the case for now.

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