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Jul 15, 2015

Time to withdraw ’emergency’ U.S. accommodation: Fed’s Mester

By Jonathan Spicer

(Reuters) – The Federal Reserve can start to withdraw its “emergency” policy accommodation now that the labor market is largely healed, and given the U.S. economy will likely dodge fallout from Greece’s debt crisis, a top Fed official said on Wednesday.

In a speech, Cleveland Fed President Loretta Mester bolstered the argument that she and other hawkish U.S. central bankers have been making to finally begin lifting interest rates from near zero.

Jul 14, 2015

Participants must help fix global forex market: NY Fed official

NEW YORK (Reuters) – Those who trade in the global foreign-exchange market must step up and help regulators restore fairness and public trust after a string of investigations and settlements related to rigging, a top Federal Reserve Bank of New York official said on Tuesday.

Simon Potter, head of market operations at the New York Fed, also said the emergence over the years of high-frequency electronic trading raises questions over fairness, liquidity, and the quality of prices in the currency market.

Jul 10, 2015

Fed rate hike may come as early as September, Rosengren says

By Jonathan Spicer

(Reuters) – One of the Federal Reserve’s most dovish officials said on Friday that September may turn out to be the right time to raise interest rates if the U.S. economy continues to improve, and he set a relatively high hurdle for delaying the move until next year.

Boston Fed President Eric Rosengren said in an interview that while wild cards remain – including the recent drop in oil prices, China’s economic slowdown, and the ongoing Greek debt crisis – the U.S. central bank could move to tighten policy at any upcoming meeting, including one in mid-September.

Jul 10, 2015

Fed rate hike possible this year; Greece looms: Rosengren

By Jonathan Spicer

(Reuters) – The Federal Reserve might hike U.S. interest rates later this year as long as inflation firms and Greece and other international wildcards do not get in the way, a top Fed official said on Friday.

Boston Fed President Eric Rosengren, a dovish U.S. central banker, said negotiations over Greek debt and a slowing Chinese economy were among the possible disruptions that could delay the beginning of tighter U.S. monetary policy, though they hadn’t altered expectations yet.

Jul 8, 2015

More data needed before Fed can hike, as Greek worries loom: Fed minutes

WASHINGTON/NEW YORK (Reuters) – Federal Reserve officials needed to see more signs of a strengthening U.S. economy before raising interest rates, according to minutes of a June Fed policy meeting, at which Greece’s debt crisis was cited as a serious concern.

The minutes from the June 16-17 meeting show how the central bank continues to grapple with its plan to raise interest rates later this year, in the wake of mixed economic data domestically and market turmoil gathering steam abroad. The minutes underscored the view that a Fed rate hike would likely have to wait until at least September.

Jul 2, 2015

Regional Feds’ head-hunting under scrutiny over insider bias, delays

NEW YORK/WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Efforts to fill top positions at some U.S. Federal Reserve regional branches are casting a spotlight on a decades-old process that critics say is opaque, favors insiders, and is ripe for reform.

Patrick Harker took the reins as president of the Philadelphia Fed this week, in an appointment that attracted scrutiny because he served on the committee of directors that interviewed other prospective candidates for the job he ultimately took.

Jun 18, 2015

Fed may hike just once in 2015 as Yellen strikes less certain tone

SAN FRANCISCO/WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The question of how quickly the Federal Reserve should raise rates is dividing normally like-minded policymakers at the U.S. central bank, pitting those who favor two hikes this year against a growing number of those who want to stop at just one.

That shift, and the very real possibility that Fed Chair Janet Yellen may be one of the five who now prefer a single rate hike in 2015 rather than among an equal number who prefer two, is bolstering the view that the Fed may not deliver until late in the year.

Jun 18, 2015

Fed says U.S. economy strong enough to handle rate hike

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The U.S. economy is growing moderately after a winter swoon and likely strong enough to support an interest rate increase by the end of the year, but concerns remain over the recovery of the labour market, U.S. Federal Reserve officials said on Wednesday.

With the economy still on track to grow as much as 2 percent for the year, the central bank’s latest policy statement keeps it on track for at least one and perhaps a second rate increase later this year.

Jun 17, 2015

Fed says U.S. economy still strong enough to handle rate hike

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The U.S. economy is growing moderately after a winter swoon and likely strong enough to support an interest rate increase by the end of the year, U.S. Federal Reserve officials indicated on Wednesday.

After contracting in the first quarter, the economy is now

on track to grow between 1.8 percent and 2.0 percent this year, down from the 2.3-2.7 percent range forecast in March, according to the central bank’s latest policy statement and new projections issued by Fed policymakers.

Jun 12, 2015

Insight – Bond selloff a wild card that could delay Fed rate hike

NEW YORK (Reuters) – The sharp bond market selloff is starting to pinch American consumers and companies, causing a mild economic tightening that, if sustained, could raise alarms at the Federal Reserve and even delay a plan to hike interest rates in coming months.

U.S. mortgage rates have reached their highest level in a year-and-a-half, auto loans are getting a bit more expensive, and corporations across the board have seen their borrowing costs jump as U.S. and European debt retrenched in recent weeks.