No, really: look to economists for nuance on Fed’s decision-making

October 29, 2015

U.S. Federal Reserve Chair Yellen testifies before a House Financial Services Committee hearing on Capitol Hill in WashingtonFor all of the incessant talk from market trading desks on how economic forecasters are hopelessly off track on just about everything, their collective thinking on the subtleties of Fed policy near a potentially historic turning point has been well worth listening to.

ECB’s ‘whole menu’ bereft of new dishes

October 28, 2015

A freelance journalist eats his dinner behind a note advertising a "crisis menu" in a restaurant in SibiuECB President Mario Draghi’s ‘whole menu’ of monetary policy options to spur lending and boost euro area inflation from below zero appears to have few new dishes, if any at all.

Swedish housing market keeps cheering the Riksbank

October 28, 2015

Sweden’s Riksbank left its negative interest rate steady at -0.35 percent on Wednesday and increased its bond purchase programme by another 65 billion crowns (just under 7 billion euros). It also said it could cut rates again if needed.

Britain’s growth slowdown no “game changer”

October 27, 2015

Australia v Scotland - IRB Rugby World Cup 2015 Quarter FinalBritain’s economic growth slowed more than expected in the third quarter of this year – buying the Bank of England more time as it mulls its first rate hike in over eight years.

Euro zone bank lending sluggish despite tsunami of QE and cheap cash

October 27, 2015

A picture illustration shows Euro banknotes in Zenica

For the European Central Bank, digging deeper into quantitative easing may be the only policy option left, now that growth in bank lending to businesses is stalling again.

The threat of fiscal dominance in Brazil

October 22, 2015

????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????Brazil’s inflation is approaching 10 percent and yet the central bank has opted not to raise interest rates in a meeting on Wednesday. Not only that, it pushed back its target to 2017.

More ECB QE? Perhaps best when the Fed raises

October 22, 2015

Those clamouring for the European Central Bank to ramp up its 60 billion euro per month stimulus programme will have to wait until December.

Keeping the QE door open

October 22, 2015

Swapping Frankfurt for the milder climes of the Med, ECB policy-makers meeting in the Maltese capital Valletta today are expected to keep the door open for more monetary stimulus but stop short of giving it, awaiting more evidence on the outlook for euro zone inflation. The Bank has got some outside help recently in the form of a slight rebound in oil prices, while the expected delay in the Fed’s rate hike also buys it some time. Yet the growth outlook is still poor – witness the German Finance Ministry’s overnight assessment of the impact of China’s slowdown on the euro zone’s top economy – and the euro is still a bit too strong for the ECB’s liking. December’s publication of the ECB’s staff forecasts may be the moment when the arguments for action become louder.

Goldman: chances of a Fed rate hike this year just 60 percent

October 19, 2015

Dudley shields his eyes as he looks into the audience at the Bretton Woods Committee International Council conference in WashingtonAfter months of speculation and delay, the chances the U.S. Federal Reserve raises interest rates this year are only 60 percent, according to Goldman Sachs chief U.S. economist Jan Hatzius.

Another quarter of remarkably precise China GDP growth data

October 19, 2015

????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????China GDP releases are starting to look like near-perfect landings each and every time, in all kinds of weather conditions and visibility.