interest rates

No Interest Rate Changes This Month

The FOMC unanimously decided on no policy action upon the conclusion of their January meeting, which was as expected. The formal statement noted continued strength in the labor market and economic activity rising at a ‘solid’ rate (downgraded from December’s ‘strong’).  While household spending has continued to grow, a slowdown in business fixed investment last…

interest rate increase

Interest Rates Up Another 0.25%

The Federal Reserve Open Market Committee raised the fed funds target rate by 0.25% to a new level of 2.25-2.50%.  This was widely anticipated, with a high futures market probability of this outcome beforehand.  There were no committee dissents. The formal statement was little altered from November, noting that economic activity remains strong, unemployment remained…

mid-term election

How will the mid-term election results affect financial markets?

Unlike the surprise result in the presidential election two years ago, that fooled pollsters and statisticians both, last week’s mid-term election results were in line with predictions—although a few surprises still unfolded.  The Republicans held their majority position in the Senate, while the Democrats won a majority in the House of Representatives.  However, both were…

the fed

November Fed Meeting | No Change

As expected, the FOMC unanimously made no change in the fed funds target rate during the November meeting—leaving the level at 2.00-2.25%. Their formal statement offered few surprises, noting strength in underlying economic growth and labor markets. In keeping with the quarterly pace of rate movements, fed funds futures peg the chances of a hike…