Wednesday, November 2, 2011

US Federal Reserve Keeps Policy Settings Unchanged

The US Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) held the fed funds rate unchanged at 0 to 0.25 percent, and made no other changes to its policy. The Fed said: "To support a stronger economic recovery and to help ensure that inflation, over time, is at levels consistent with the dual mandate, the Committee decided today to continue its program to extend the average maturity of its holdings of securities as announced in September. The Committee is maintaining its existing policies of reinvesting principal payments from its holdings of agency debt and agency mortgage-backed securities in agency mortgage-backed securities and of rolling over maturing Treasury securities at auction."

The Fed previously announced the commencement of "operation twist" at its September meeting, after it held monetary policy settings unchanged at its August meeting, where it committed to low rates until 2013.  The US reported inflation of 3.9% in September, compared to 3.8% in August, and 3.6% in both July, June and May, up from 3.2% in April, as high commodity prices caused a broader increase in prices.  Meanwhile the US economy grew 2.5% in Q2, up from 1.3% in Q2, and 0.4% in Q1 this year.  


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