Correspondent, Washington, DC
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Oct 3, 2012
via MacroScope

Sustainable full employment is within reach: Green Party U.S. presidential candidate Stein

As Americans get ready or tonight’s presidential debate, there’s one candidate they won’t be seeing on television and may not even have heard of: Jill Stein, a Harvard-trained doctor and Green Party candidate. Stein is promising a Green New Deal that she says could create more than 20 million jobs, 16 million through a government-sponsored program for full employment and millions more due to the increase in demand that would come from the new investments. She wants to expand Medicare coverage for all Americans and sharply reduce military spending, and says her policies would reduce the deficit by boosting tax revenues. She spoke to Reuters recently by telephone. What follows is an abbreviated transcript of the interview.

The Green Party does not appear to have realistic chance to win a major election at the moment. What is the goal of your candidacy?

Oct 3, 2012
via MacroScope

Don Rajoy de la Mancha: Spain’s “quixotic” adventures

 

Spain will not seek aid imminently, says Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy. And by imminently, he means, not this weekend. Just the latest twist in a European crisis plot that now sees Spain as its primary actor.

The focus on Spain’s reluctance to see foreign aid, a pre-condition for additional European Central Bank purchases of its bonds, is ironic given the country’s record of goading weaker counterparts into similar rescue packages earlier in the crisis.

Oct 1, 2012
via MacroScope

Why the Fed shouldn’t raise rates to discipline Congress

Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke has been trying for some time to fend off critics of his bond-buying policies who argue the central bank is making it easier for the federal government to run deficits. In remarks to the Economic Club of Indiana on Monday, he seems to have found a useful way to help illustrate his point.

It follows logically that those who say the Fed is abetting profligate governments might want to see higher interest rates that would discourage excess federal borrowing. Bernanke pursues this line of thinking to its natural conclusions – and is very uncomfortable with the results:

Sep 19, 2012
via MacroScope

Don’t call it a target: Fed buys wiggle room with qualitative goals

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In a historic shift in the way the Federal Reserve conducts monetary policy, theU.S. central bank last week announced an open-ended quantitative easing program where it has committed to continue buying assets until the country’s employment outlook improves substantially. Bank of America-Merrill Lynch credit analysts captured Wall Street’s reaction:

With an open-ended QE program to buy agency mortgages, and an extremely dovish statement, the Fed managed to provide a positive surprise for a market that was expecting a lot.

Sep 19, 2012

Fed committed to growth push despite internal discord

By Pedro Nicolaci da Costa

(Reuters) – A string of speeches from top Federal Reserve officials on Tuesday suggested the U.S. central bank is willing to be aggressive in its drive to beef up economic growth, yet also highlighted a small but vocal minority opposing fresh stimulus.

As Fed policymakers took to the podium following their announcement of an open-ended bond-buying program last week, William Dudley, the New York Federal Reserve Bank’s influential president, said officials are committed to accelerating the pace of economic recovery.

Sep 17, 2012
via MacroScope

Safe-haven Canada

The European crisis has thinned the ranks of countries considered safe-havens for investors, and may be contributing to an increase in foreign ownership of Canadian assets. Canada, whose comparatively robust banking sector helped it weather the 2008-2009 financial crisis better than many peers, saw capital inflows in July that helped reverse a June decline, according to the latest figures.

Foreigners resumed their net purchases of Canadian securities in July, taking on C$6.67 billion ($6.88 billion) after having reduced their holdings by C$7.76 billion in June, Statistics Canada said on Monday. Canadian authorities have said foreign investors view Canada as a safe haven. So far this year foreigners have made C$41.23 billion in net purchases, a substantial amount though down from C$54.31 billion seen in the first seven months of 2011.

Sep 13, 2012

Fresh Fed stimulus seen, details in question

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The U.S. Federal Reserve appears set to launch a third round of unconventional monetary stimulus on Thursday while signalling that a weak U.S. economy may warrant ultra-low interest rates for at least another three years.

Not everyone believes the Fed will embark on another bond- buying spree, and plenty of doubts remain about the likely efficacy of such a move.

Sep 13, 2012

Fed seen launching QE3, details in question

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The U.S. Federal Reserve appears set to launch a third round of unconventional monetary stimulus on Thursday while signaling that a weak U.S. economy may warrant ultra-low interest rates for at least another three years.

Not everyone believes the Fed will embark on another bond- buying spree, and plenty of doubts remain about the likely efficacy of such a move.

Sep 13, 2012

Fed seen launching fresh stimulus, details in question

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The U.S. Federal Reserve appears set to launch a third round of unconventional monetary stimulus on Thursday while signaling that a weak U.S. economy may warrant ultra-low interest rates for at least another three years.

Not everyone believes the Fed will embark on another bond- buying spree, and plenty of doubts remain about the likely efficacy of such a move.

Sep 9, 2012

Jobs rut tips scales in favor of Fed stimulus

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The Federal Reserve looks set to launch a third round of bond purchases this week to try to drive borrowing costs lower and breathe more life into an economy that is not growing fast enough to lower unemployment.

Despite political opposition and some internal dissent, economists said a weak report on jobs growth for August was likely enough to convince the U.S. central bank a looser monetary policy was needed.

    • 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:
      2001
      Languages:
      English, Portuguese, Spanish, French
      Awards:
      2011 Deadline Club Award from the Society of Professional Journalists' New York Chapter
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