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Apr 15, 2013
via MacroScope

German ghost of inflations past haunting European stability: Posen

“Reality is sticky.” That was the core of Adam Posen’s message to German policymakers on their home turf, at a recent conference in Berlin.

What did the former UK Monetary Policy Committee member mean? Quite simply, that the types of structural economic changes that Germany has been pushing on the euro zone are not only destructive but also bound to fail, at least if history is any guide.

Apr 10, 2013

Fed’s Lockhart says “premature” to discuss stimulus pullback

, April 10 (Reuters) – It is too soon for
the Federal Reserve to begin considering a tapering or halt of
its bond-buying stimulus program, Atlanta Fed President Dennis
Lockhart said on Wednesday.

“A lot of focus on that at the moment is maybe a bit
premature,” Lockhart told reporters during a press briefing on
the sidelines of an Atlanta Fed conference. “We have to wait and
watch how the data come in and see how the economy evolves.”

Apr 9, 2013

BoE’s Haldane: Need simpler bank rules that are harder to game

WASHINGTON, April 9 (Reuters) – Bank regulators need to
develop much simpler rules to make it harder for large financial
firms to game the supervisory system, Bank of England official
Andrew Haldane said on Tuesday.

“We need to do a radical pruning, simplifying of our
regulatory apparatus (that) places much less emphasis on what
are unreliable measures of risk,” Haldane, the BoE’s executive
director for financial stability, told a conference sponsored by
the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta.

Apr 8, 2013

Bernanke says stress tests make banks more stable

STONE MOUNTAIN, Georgia (Reuters) – Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke said on Monday the central bank’s periodic bank stress tests have made the financial system more resilient.

Contrasting the current state of banks to their tattered condition in 2009 after the historic financial crisis, Bernanke said the sector’s rebound was positive for the broader recovery given the importance of credit to economic growth.

Apr 5, 2013
via MacroScope

Yellen-san supportive of BOJ’s aggressive easing

For all the talk about clear communications at the Federal Reserve, central bank Vice Chair Janet Yellen’s speech to the Society of American Business and Economics Writers ran a rather long-winded 16 pages.

However, while Fed board members generally do not take questions from reporters, there was a scheduled audience Q&A which, at this particular event, meant it was effectively a press briefing.

Apr 4, 2013

Yellen: Fed should focus on jobs, even if inflation edges past target

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The Federal Reserve should focus its energies on bringing down an elevated U.S. unemployment rate even if inflation “slightly” exceeds the central bank’s target, Fed Vice Chair Janet Yellen said on Thursday.

Yellen, who is seen as a potential successor to Chairman Ben Bernanke, says she looks forward to the day when policymakers can abandon unconventional tools like asset purchases and return to the conventional business of lowering and raising interest rates, currently set at effectively zero.

Apr 4, 2013

Risk appetite on the rise in U.S. capital markets: Fed survey

WASHINGTON, April 4 (Reuters) – Hedge fund and derivative
investors are taking on more risk as aggressive monetary easing
and an improving economy boost demand for higher-yielding
securities, a Federal Reserve survey showed on Thursday.

The Fed’s Senior Credit Officer Survey, which supplements
data on the banking sector with some insights into activity in
funding markets for asset-backed securities and over-the-counter
derivatives, showed one in four respondents reported an increase
in hedge fund leverage, or debt used to make financial bets.

Apr 2, 2013

Fed may be able to pull back on stimulus this year: Lockhart

BIRMINGHAM, Alabama (Reuters) – The Federal Reserve may be able to reduce its bond-buying stimulus plan before the end of this year if economic growth continues to pick up and employment improves further, a top central bank official said.

Dennis Lockhart, president of the Atlanta Fed, said on Tuesday he expects the economy to expand a bit over 2 percent this year, though he does see some chance that the expansion could prove even stronger.

Apr 1, 2013
via MacroScope

Goal line on jobs still a long way off: former Fed economist Stockton

The Great Recession set the U.S. labor market so far back that there is still a long way to go before policymakers can claim victory and point to a true return to healthy conditions, a top former Fed economist said. The U.S. economy remains around 3 million jobs short of its pre-recession levels, and that’s without accounting for population growth.

“The goal line is still a long ways off,” David Stockton, former head of economic research at theU.S.central bank’s powerful Washington-based board, told an event sponsored by the Peterson Institute for International Economics. He sees the American economy improving this year, but believes the recovery will continue to have its ups and downs.

Mar 28, 2013
via MacroScope

Europe’s ‘democratic deficit’ evident in Cyprus bailout arrangement

The problem of a “democratic deficit” that might arise from the process of European integration has always been high on policymakers’ minds. The term even has its own Wikipedia entry.

As Cypriots waited patiently in line for banks to reopen after being shuttered for two weeks, the issue was brought to light with particular clarity, since the country’s bailout is widely seen as being imposed on it by richer, more powerful states, particularly Germany.

    • About Pedro

      "Pedro da Costa has been covering economics and financial markets since 2001. He is currently based in Washington and focuses on the Federal Reserve and macroeconomic policy. Da Costa earned a Master's in international relations at the University of California San Diego and studied sociology and political science as an undergraduate at the University of Chicago and the London School of Economics. He grew up in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil."
      Joined Reuters:
      English, Portuguese, Spanish, French
      2011 Deadline Club Award from the Society of Professional Journalists' New York Chapter
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