Entries filed under 'Federal Reserve'

    Will We See a Bolder Fed in 2017?

    December 14, 2016 3:20 PM by Zane Brown

    U.S. policymakers hiked rates as expected on December 14 and signaled the possibility of a more aggressive pace of policy tightening in 2017. 

    Another December, another rate hike by the U.S. Federal Reserve (Fed). As expected, the Fed’s policy-setting arm, the Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC), raised its target policy rate 25 basis points at the conclusion of its two-day meeting on December 14 to a range of 0.50% to 0.75%.  (The last Fed rate hike occurred on December 15, 2015.)  

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    Three Trends That Defined 2016

    November 28, 2016 9:38 AM by Giulio Martini

    Here’s a look at key factors that have influenced economies and markets in the current year—and their investment implications for 2017. 

    As the current year winds down, we thought this would be a good opportunity to review three key trends that have affected economies and markets in 2016—and what their implications may be for investors in 2017. 

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    Reassuring Words from the Fed and the Bank of Japan

    September 21, 2016 4:45 PM by Zane Brown

    After the European Central Bank spooked investors earlier in the month, policymakers in the United States and Japan emphasized “lower for longer” rate expectations on September 21. 

    After the European Central Bank (ECB) disappointed investors two weeks ago by deciding not to step up its bond-buying program, subsequently spurring a rise in yields across the globe, the Bank of Japan (BoJ) and the U.S. Federal Reserve (Fed) offered more market-friendly policy statements on September 21. 

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    Yellen Tilts Toward Fed Action in December

    August 26, 2016 2:19 PM by Zane Brown

    In her closely watched speech at the U.S. Federal Reserve’s annual symposium in Jackson Hole, Wyoming, the Fed chair signaled a higher likelihood of a rate hike in December. 

    Media coverage and memories of former U.S. Federal Reserve (Fed) chairman Ben Bernanke’s surprise signaling of the second phase of quantitative easing (QE2) at the 2010 event of the Fed’s annual late-summer symposium at Jackson Hole, Wyoming, kept investors’ attention focused on the opening speech from the current Fed chair, Janet Yellen, for the 2016 gathering. 

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    The Fed Deserves Praise, Not Scorn

    August 26, 2016 1:35 PM by Giulio Martini

    It would be the height of irony if the Fed’s critics succeed in snatching defeat from the jaws of victory.

    In a provocative editorial published in The Wall Street Journal, on August 25, Kevin Warsh, who served (2006–11) on the board of governors of the U.S. Federal Reserve, takes the Fed to task for how it has pursued, since 2008, its policy objectives of 2% inflation and maximum employment. He seems to believe that the Fed is oblivious to forces that are bearing down on it from both Congress and the public that ultimately will threaten its independence unless economic growth accelerates.

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    The Fed Thinks Global

    March 16, 2016 4:45 PM by Zane Brown

    The central bank's concern for developments overseas may have informed its decision, on March 16, to scale back rate-hike projections.

    The U.S. Federal Reserve (Fed) has made a point of emphasizing that it will be “data dependent” in formulating any future policy moves. However, the Fed threw markets a curve on March 16 by citing recent turmoil in global markets, as it held the fed funds target rate steady at 0.25–0.50%—and scaled back projections for additional rate hikes in 2016 and beyond.

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    The Fed Faces a Changed World

    January 27, 2016 4:48 PM by Zane Brown

    The U.S. Federal Reserve’s January policy statement acknowledged global market turmoil and implied a less aggressive pace of rate hikes.

    What a difference a month makes. The world in which the U.S. Federal Reserve (Fed) conducted its two-day policy meeting on January 27 is quite a different place than the one that characterized its previous meeting in mid-December. 

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    How Could ECB-Fed Divergence Affect LIBOR?

    December 28, 2015 11:45 AM by Zane Brown

    Here’s a look at how the benchmark lending rate might respond to the differing policy paths of U.S. and European central banks.

    How can we expect LIBOR—more formally, the London Interbank Offered Rate—to react if the European Central bank (ECB) is aggressively easing its monetary policy while the U.S. Federal Reserve (Fed) does the opposite?

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    The Fed Awakens

    December 16, 2015 4:13 PM by Zane Brown

    The long-awaited interest rate hike by the U.S. Federal Reserve is now a reality. Perhaps more important to investors, policymakers indicated that they may not be in a rush to tighten further. 

    As the NASA hands at Mission Control might say, “We have liftoff.” The U.S. Federal Reserve’s (Fed) policy-setting arm, the Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC), delivered its long-promised 25 basis-point increase in the fed funds rate at the conclusion of its meeting on December 15–16. The Fed’s last rate hike was in June 2006.

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    The Fed: Why This Rate Hike Will Be Different

    December 15, 2015 2:46 PM by Zane Brown

    The anticipated tightening move by the U.S. Federal Reserve on December 16 would feature some new wrinkles. Here’s an explanation of the process.

    A December rate hike by the U.S. Federal Reserve (Fed) will be the first such move since June 2006. For many advisors, it will be the first rate hike in their career. It also will mark something of a first for the Fed, too.

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