Powell says he would reject any Trump request to resign

Fed's Powell Pledges Patience, Sensitivity to Risks in Markets

Fed's Powell Pledges Patience, Sensitivity to Risks in Markets

"We will be patient as we watch to see how the economy evolves", Powell said.

The greenback fell despite US job growth surging and comments from Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell that the central bank will be sensitive to market concern about a USA economic slowdown. Average hourly pay was up 3.2% compared to a year earlier.

Furthermore, Fed Chair Powell also said that rate hikes would continue to be gradual and data dependent. Do we need to move more, faster?

The U.S. central bank hiked interest rates four times last year, including in December when policymakers' forecasts pointed to two more rises this year.

The losses in the Japan also followed Thursday's grim Wall Street session, which saw major indices end down more than two percent after Apple slashed its revenue forecast on weak demand in China and a USA report showed manufacturing activity slumping to a two-year low.

"I thought stock market concerns about growth were overblown", said Gus Faucher, chief economist at PNC.

"Despite this dovish tone, we are skeptical", Schenker said in a note.

The head of the Fed, once confirmed by the Senate, can only be removed "for cause", not a policy disagreement. Powell said last week he wouldn't resign if the president asked him to step down.

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The tech-heavy Cheddar 50 Index, which measures the performance of Cheddar's 50 top companies ー from Apple ($AAPL) to GM ($GM) ー gained 5.4 percent on Friday, amid broader market gains. Wages and labour force participation both rose, signalling sustained economic strength.

Powell's willingness to be flexible on interest rates was welcome news to investors, many of whom anxious that Fed chair risked cutting off the current economic expansion by continuing to raise interest rates despite signs the USA economy was cooling off a little.

The world's biggest economy expanded well above potential last year and, along with US consumers, is expected to remain strong through this year. The Fed said in December it anticipated raising rates twice in 2019. "There aren't signs of significant economic weakness".

Kudlow argued the Federal Reserve is overly concerned about inflation at the risk of stunting economic growth. "We're hearing a lot from different groups of people about the role the balance sheet normalization may be playing in the market", Powell said.

"Markets are expressing concerns about global growth in particular and trade negotiations", Powell said. "However, we look for the Fed to wait until May 1 to hike rates again".

"I'll just say that we are listening carefully to that., listening sensitively to the message that markets are sending, and we are going to be taking those downside risks into account as we make policy going forward".

Mr Powell said that he did not believe the Fed's removal of stimulus by shrinking holdings of Treasuries and mortgage-backed securities played a major role in the recent market turmoil. Articles appear on euronews.com for a limited time.

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