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INTEREST RATE DECISIONS


04.11.2010 - The pace of recovery in output and employment continues to be slow as confirmed by the information received since the Federal Open Market Committee met in September. Household spending is growing slowly, but remains constrained by modest income growth, high unemployment, lower housing wealth, and tight credit. Rise of business spending on equipment and software is less rapid than earlier in the year, while investment in nonresidential structures continues to be weak. Employers remain reluctant to add to payrolls. Housing starts continue to be depressed. Longer-term inflation expectations have remained stable, but measures of underlying inflation have trended lower in recent quarters.

The Committee will maintain the target range for the federal funds rate at 0% to 0.25% and continues to anticipate that economic conditions, including low rates of resource utilization, subdued inflation trends, and stable inflation expectations, are likely to warrant exceptionally low levels for the federal funds rate for an extended period.

20.10.2010 - The Bank of Canada today announced that it is preserving its target for the overnight rate at 1% level.

As said in the press release «temporary factors supporting growth in 2010 … have largely run their course and fiscal stimulus». The combination of difficult labour market dynamics and ongoing deleveraging in many advanced economies is expected to slow down their pace of growth relative to prior expectations. So recovery in the United States is expected to be weaker-than-projected and economic recovery in Canada to be more gradual than it had projected in its July Monetary Policy Report, with growth of 3% in 2010, 2.3% in 2011, and 2.6% in 2012.

07.10.2010 - The Bank of England’s Monetary Policy Committee decided to maintain its main Bank Rate at its current level of 0.5%. Besides, the stock of asset purchases is also maintained at its current level of 200 billion GBP. Andrew Sentence, an MPC member voted to raise the rate by 0.25% to prevent high inflation. According to last surveys, the inflation level remains well above the projected 2% target. The Bank Rate has been maintained at 0.5% level since March 2009.

07.10.2010 - At today’s meeting the Governing Council of the European Central Bank, headed by Jean Claude Trichet, decided to maintain its main refinancing tender rate at 1 per cent level trying to keep the recovery on the right path. The rate has been maintained at its record low for 17 months as it is viewed as appropriate for the current state of the 16-nation economy. The analysts do not expect the bank to raise rates until the end of the year.

05.10.2010 - The BOJ policy board, headed by Masaaki Shirakawa, made a drastic policy shift, cutting the target for extremely low overnight interest rate to a range 0- 0.1% from 0.1% for the purpose of countering emerging risks of an economic slowdown. The reason of such a decision is deflation as well as extreme appreciation of the national currency versus the dollar. The next BOJ monetary policy meeting is due on October 28.

05.10.2010 - Today the Reserve Bank of Australia, headed by Glenn Stevens, has defied widespread expectations, leaving its main Cash Rate at 4.5%. In its official statement Stevens voiced the idea that the current levels is viewed as “appropriate for the time being”. The decision to hold rates is reasoned by weak pace of economic recovery in the USA and Europe, however China, the largest Australia`s trading partner deliver constant signs of economic growth. The AUD pared its gains after the decision was announced.

22.09.2010 - As a result of its September policy meeting in Washington the Federal Open Market Committee decided not to lift its interest rate, however, the FED said in its statement that t is ready to act to boost the economy if necessary. The FED governor Ben Bernanke voiced concerns about high unemployment and low inflation. The FED still has two more meetings in 2010, but most experts predict that the Bank will not ease the policy till the end of the year.

22.09.2010 - For the third consecutive month the Norges Bank, the central bank of Norway, voted to maintain its key interest rate at 2 per cent level. The decision was in line with all prior expectations. According to the official statement, inflation remains low in the country, below the CB`s target of 2.5%. In Norwegian economy business activity is constantly increasing, however, the pace of recovery is not appropriate to adjust the rate closer to its average levels.

17.09.2010 - The SNB voted to maintain its benchmark interest rate at its record low of 0.25%. The SNB is not inclined to lift the rate over the entire forecasting horizon. However, the Bank assumes that global economy is recovering, but the pace remains subdued in some regions with downside risks. SNB anticipates that GBP in 2010 will grow by 2.5%. The inflation target for 2010 is expected at 0.7%. The next monetary policy is due on December 16.

17.09.2010 - The Reserve Bank of New Zealand, headed by Alan Bollard, made a decision to hold its key interest rate at 3% level as economic activity in the country is damaged due to an earthquake in Canterbury on September 4. Construction sector is strongly affected. The bank expects more moderate increase in Official Cash Rate than previously expected in June statement. Next time the Bank will discuss its monetary policy and make a rate decision of October 27.

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