Video | Agriculture | Confidence | Economy | Energy | Employment | Finance | Media | Property | RBNZ | Science | SOEs | Tax | Technology | Telecoms | Tourism | Transport | Search

 


While you were sleeping: Yellen affirms taper plan

While you were sleeping: Yellen affirms plan to wind back stimulus

Feb. 28 (BusinessDesk) - Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen says the central bank would continue to wind back its stimulus programme, even while noting that the US labour market has a way to go to recover.

"If there's a significant change in the outlook, certainly we would be open to reconsidering, but I wouldn't want to jump to conclusions here," she told the Senate Banking Committee."

The Federal Open Market Committee is scheduled to meet on March 18, having trimmed its monthly bond purchasing programme by US$10 billion to US$65 billion last month.

Yellen appeared before the Congress two weeks ago but her appearance before the Senate was delayed after the US was hit by snowstorms. Data since then has been weaker than expected, including some measures of the labour market, home building, manufacturing and retailing.

Retail Metrics said American retailers as a group recorded the first decline in profit since 2009, based on quarterly results from 62 of the 122 chains it follows.

US jobless claims rose by 14,000 to 348,000 last week, Labor Department figures showed, beating estimates, while orders for durable goods fell 1 percent in January, less than economists had predicted and stoking expectations snowstorms hadn't dented activity as much as feared..

Yellen said the FOMC sees the world's biggest economy and its labour market expanding "at a moderate pace this year and next" while "the unemployment rate will continue to decline toward its longer-run sustainable level, and inflation will move back toward 2 percent over coming years."

Stocks on Wall Street edged higher as she spoke, with traders picking up on her willingness to slow the pace of tapering should the economy prove weaker than the Fed expects. The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 0.3 percent to 16,238.96, the Standard & Poor's 500 Index was up 0.2 percent to 1849.12 to near a record and the Nasdaq Composite climbed 0.4 percent to 4308.72.

"It's a bit of a change. She seems to be more willing to step back on the accelerator than she was when she last spoke to Congress," Matt Maley, an equity strategist with Miller Tabak & Co, told Bloomberg.

West Texas Intermediate crude fell 0.4 percent to US$102.15 a barrel and gold gained 0.4 percent to US$1,333.80 an ounce.

The yen strengthened 0.2 percent to 102.19 per dollar as traders were drawn to the 'safe haven' currency amid rising tensions in Ukraine. International Monetary Fund managing director Christine Lagarde said Ukraine had made a formal request to the IMF for financial support. The nation's lawmakers are set to approve Arseniy Yatsenyuk as prime minister to lead an interim government after pro-Russian leader Viktor Yanukovych fled the capital, acting President Oleksandr Turchynov was reported as saying.

In Europe, the Euro Stoxx 50 fell 0.4 percent to 3134.94 amid concern about rising tensions in the Crimea region of Ukraine, where pro-Russian sentiment is strong. Crimea politicians have voted to hold a referendum on the status of the region, according to Interfax, while Russia, which bases its Black Sea fleet at Sevastopol, has stepped up military exercises.

Royal Bank of Scotland tumbled 7.7 percent after posting its biggest loss in four years, while Allianz SE fell 2.3 percent after earnings missed estimates.

"The markets had gone ahead of themselves and we may see investors taking some risk out of the table. Volatility has also come back to the fore," Thomas Malloch, investment manager at Redmayne Bentley, told Reuters.

(BusinessDesk)

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Business Headlines | Sci-Tech Headlines

 

Scoop Business: RBNZ Keeps OCR At 3.5%, Signals Slower Pace Of Future Hikes

Reserve Bank governor Graeme Wheeler kept the official cash rate at 3.5 percent and signalled he won’t be as aggressive with future rate hikes as previously thought as inflation remains tamer than expected. The kiwi dollar fell to a seven-month low. More>>

ALSO:

Weather: Dry Spells Take Hold In South Island

Many areas in the South Island are tracking towards record dry spells as relatively warm, dry weather that began in mid-August continues... for some South Island places, the current period of fine weather is quite rare. More>>

ALSO:

Scoop Business: Productivity Commission To Look At Housing Land Supply

The Productivity Commission is to expand on its housing affordability report with an investigation into improving land supply and development capacity, particularly in areas with strong population growth. More>>

ALSO:

Forestry: Man Charged After 2013 Death

Levin Police have arrested and charged a man with manslaughter in relation to the death of Lincoln Kidd who was killed during a tree felling operation on 19 December 2013. More>>

ALSO:

Smells Like Justice: Dairy Company Fined Over Odour

Dairy company fined over odour Dairy supply company Open Country Dairy Limited has been convicted and fined more than $35,000 for discharging objectionable odour from its Waharoa factory at the time of last year’s ”spring flush” when milk supply was high. More>>

Scoop Business: Dairy Product Prices Decline To Lowest Since July 2012

Dairy product prices dropped to the lowest level since July 2012 in the latest GlobalDairyTrade auction, led by a slump in rennet casein and butter milk powder. More>>

ALSO:

SOE Results: TVNZ Lifts Annual Profit 25% On Flat Ad Revenue, Quits Igloo

Television New Zealand, the state-owned broadcaster, lifted annual profit 25 percent, ahead of forecast and despite a dip in advertising revenue, while quitting its stake in the pay-TV Igloo joint venture with Sky Network Television. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 
 
Computer Power Plus

Standards New Zealand

Standards New Zealand
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Business
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news