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Sep 18, 2013

Fed sticks to stimulus, worried about rise in borrowing costs

WASHINGTON, Sept 18 (Reuters) – The U.S. Federal Reserve
said on Wednesday that it would continue buying bonds at an $85
billion monthly pace for now, expressing concerns that a sharp
rise in borrowing costs in recent months could weigh on the
economy.

The decision surprised financial markets that were braced
for a reduction in the central bank’s economic stimulus.

Sep 18, 2013

Fed sticks to stimulus, worried about growth soft spots

WASHINGTON, Sept 18 (Reuters) – The U.S. Federal Reserve
said on Wednesday that it would continue buying bonds at an $85
billion monthly pace for now, surprising financial markets that
were braced for a reduction in the central bank’s economic
stimulus.

Citing strains in the economy from tight fiscal policy and
higher mortgage rates, the Fed decided against the tapering of
asset purchases that investors had all but priced into stock and
bond markets.

Sep 17, 2013

Fed likely to reduce bond buying, pass policy milestone

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The U.S. Federal Reserve is expected to begin its long retreat from ultra-easy monetary policy on Wednesday by announcing a small reduction in its bond buying, while stressing that interest rates will remain near zero for a long time to come.

Most economists expect the Fed to scale back its monthly purchases by a modest $10 billion, taking them to $75 billion and signaling the beginning of the end to an unprecedented episode of monetary expansion that has been felt worldwide.

Sep 17, 2013

Yellen frontrunner for Fed chair after Summers withdraws: sources

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Federal Reserve Vice Chair Janet Yellen became the frontrunner for the U.S. central bank’s top job when President Barack Obama’s preferred candidate, former adviser Larry Summers, withdrew, sources familiar with the situation said on Monday.

If nominated and confirmed, Yellen would replace Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke, whose second term expires in January.

Sep 17, 2013

Defecting Democrats doomed Summers bid for Fed job

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The death knell for Lawrence Summers’ candidacy to lead the Federal Reserve came on Friday morning with a shock phone call message left for President Barack Obama’s chief of staff, Denis McDonough.

The message was from Democratic Senator Jeff Merkley, a member of the Senate Banking Committee from Oregon and a vocal critic of the prospects of a Summers nomination for the central bank’s chairmanship.

Sep 13, 2013

Democrats harden opposition against Summers for U.S. Fed

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Four Democrats on the Senate Banking Committee are now expected to vote “no” if President Barack Obama nominates former economics adviser Lawrence Summers to be the next chair of the Federal Reserve, complicating one of the most vital decisions of his second term.

Jon Tester on Friday became the latest member to publicly announce his opposition, taking to three the number of senators on the committee who are known to be against Summers, while a fourth, Elizabeth Warren, is also expected to be a “no” vote.

Sep 10, 2013

Syria could complicate Obama’s decision on next Fed chairman

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The uphill battle to convince the U.S. Congress to authorize a military strike against Syria could make it harder for President Barack Obama to nominate his former economic adviser Lawrence Summers as the next chairman of the Federal Reserve.

Summers, widely seen as Obama’s first choice to replace Fed chief Ben Bernanke when his term ends in January, is publicly opposed by a number of liberal Democratic senators, who prefer Fed Vice Chair Janet Yellen for the job.

Sep 6, 2013

Fed tapering still on track, hawk and dove agree

/GRENVILLE, South Carolina (Reuters) – One of the Federal Reserve’s most hawkish officials urged the central bank on Friday to curb bond buying to $70 billion a month when it meets later this month, while a noted policy dove agreed that the Fed could start to taper later this year.

Expectations for a modest cut in the U.S. central bank’s monthly bond purchases at the upcoming meeting were mostly intact after a mixed August payroll report, released earlier on Friday.

Sep 6, 2013

Fed’s George favors cutting bond buys to $70 billion/month in Sept

OMAHA, Nebraska (Reuters) – The Federal Reserve should begin reducing monthly bond purchases at a meeting later this month in order to set monetary policy on a course for “gradual and predictable” normalization, a top U.S. central banker said on Friday.

Kansas City Fed President Esther George, a consistent hawk who has argued for a tapering in bond purchases all year, also said policymakers should consider enhancing communication over how quickly the Fed will start raising interest rates, currently held near zero.

Sep 5, 2013

Battle over Fed: Summers’ opponents seek to sway Obama

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Progressive groups opposing Lawrence Summers as the next Federal Reserve chairman are stepping up pressure on President Barack Obama to make a different choice, emphasizing the price his Democratic Party would pay for nominating the former U.S. Treasury Secretary and White House aide.

They are confronted however by a well-coordinated campaign on Summers’ behalf by former Obama administration officials who have succeeded in cementing the view that Summers has basically got the job.

    • About Alister

      "White House Correspondent. Based in the United States for six years covering the economy and Federal Reserve before moving to the White House beat. Previously reported for Reuters from Germany, South Africa, the Netherlands, the United Kingdom and Iraq."
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