WASHINGTON (Reuters) – A sturdy U.S. recovery is expected to trump global economic worries as the Federal Reserve concludes its last policy meeting of 2014 on Wednesday, with officials likely to signal they are still on track to raise interest rates next year.
With oil prices in freefall, Japan in recession and the euro zone sputtering, the Fed for a second meeting running will weigh the U.S. economy’s apparent strength against overseas risks that now include a potential currency crisis in oil exporter Russia.
WASHINGTON (Reuters) – When the U.S. House of Representatives approved a terrorism insurance bill last week, it contained a little-noticed provision that would require at least one member of the Federal Reserve’s board to have community banking experience.
That provision appears destined to become law in what would mark a rare change to the composition of the U.S. central bank’s governing structure.
WASHINGTON (Reuters) – U.S. Senator Carl Levin has
introduced a bill seeking to crack down on trading on inside
information in physical commodities, the first U.S. legislation
limiting Wall Street banks’ ability to deal in physical markets
from crude oil to aluminum.
The bill, sponsored by the Michigan Democrat and
co-sponsored with Republican John McCain, is seen as Levin’s
parting swipe at Wall Street before he retires in January. He
has previously accused Goldman Sachs and other banks of
manipulating physical commodity markets.
WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Jack Reed can see the recovery taking hold at his family’s 109-year-old clothing store in Tupelo, Mississippi, with sales buoyed in part by the paychecks tied to a Toyota plant up the road and rising confidence that the jobs are here to stay.
As retailers nationwide reported a brisk jump in November sales and optimism about the holiday season, Reed said on Thursday that the gears of the U.S. economy seemed to have finally meshed.
(Reuters) – The Federal Reserve’s vow to keep interest rates near zero for a “considerable time” is likely to remain in place for now, with the U.S. central bank set to take a slow and steady approach to its first rate rise in a decade.The pledge will be up for debate again when policymakers meet next week, with a strong jobs report bolstering the case of officials who want to remove it.
But others feel it still has some shelf life, and even when officials drop it, they will almost certainly insert a placeholder to assure financial markets any rate hike is still a ways off.
WASHINGTON, Nov 21 (Reuters) – The Federal Reserve will
issue in the first quarter of next year a formal notice of rules
on its review of financial holding companies and their
activities in the physical commodities markets, a top Fed
official said on Friday.
“We are conducting a careful and thorough assessment of the
costs and benefits of financial holding company engagement in
these activities,” Fed Governor Daniel Tarullo said in prepared
remarks ahead of a Senate subcommittee hearing on the issue of
banks’ involvement with physical commodities.
WASHINGTON/NEW YORK (Reuters) – Goldman Sachs Group Inc on Thursday took the lead in rejecting allegations by a U.S. Senate subcommittee that Wall Street banks were exploiting physical commodity markets to manipulate prices and gain unfair trading advantages.
In an often heated hearing before the Senate’s Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations, Senator Carl Levin pressed bankers and executives on whether the company had inflated physical prices and curbed supplies of aluminum, adding billions of dollars in costs for consumers such as the U.S. Navy and beverage can makers.
WASHINGTON (Reuters) – A two-year Senate investigation into Wall Street’s physical commodities business found that U.S. banks had manipulated prices and gained unfair trading advantages at the expense of consumers.
While the detailed report was critical of how banks purchased and exploited huge commodity stockpiles, it did not offer any damning new details on their activities.
WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Around a third of the economists at the Federal Reserve’s Washington headquarters are women, a figure in line with women’s representation in the profession nationally, according to a Reuters analysis of Fed employee data.
The findings come as Fed Chair Janet Yellen and the U.S. central bank seek to improve efforts to recruit and promote more women and minorities into the institution.
WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The Federal Reserve on Wednesday ended its monthly bond purchase programme and signalled confidence the U.S. economic recovery would remain on track despite signs of a slowdown in many parts of the global economy.
“The Committee continues to see sufficient underlying strength in the broader economy to support ongoing progress toward maximum employment in a context of price stability,” the central bank’s policy committee said in a statement following a two-day meeting.