February 7, 2014 |
WASHINGTON - Back-to-back months of sluggish hiring suggest the economic recovery may have lost some momentum and could give the Federal Reserve second thoughts about continuing to throttle back a key stimulus program. Employers added a modest 113,000 jobs in January after boosting payrolls by just 75,000 in December, the Labor Department said Friday. The two-month average was about half of last year's monthly pace of job growth and far below analysts' expectations. Although analysts blamed the weak December hiring largely on frigid weather, there was little evidence the cold contributed to January's numbers.
February 4, 2014 |
A top Federal Reserve official expects the central bank to continue reducing a key stimulus program even though he sees more modest growth this year than many analysts have projected. Jeffrey Lacker , president of the Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond, Va., said Tuesday he supported the decision by central bank policymakers in December to start reducing the monthly bond-buying program. The Fed now is purchasing $65 billion a month in bonds after the Federal Open Market Committee voted to cut the amount by $10 billion at its December and January meetings.
January 29, 2014 |
WASHINGTON - Shrugging off the recent turbulence in financial markets, the Federal Reserve gave an upbeat take on the U.S. economy and went through with a second straight cut to its large bond-buying stimulus program. Although the decision to reduce its purchases was expected, Ben S. Bernanke won rare unanimous backing in his last meeting as Fed chairman Wednesday. The 10-0 vote to make another $10-billion-a-month cut in its bond purchases also cemented the central bank's plan to gradually dial back its unprecedented monetary stimulus.
January 24, 2014 |
NEW YORK - Wall Street took a drubbing for the second straight day as investors worry that an economic slowdown in emerging markets could trigger a correction in stocks. The Dow Jones industrial average suffered a drop of 318.24 points Friday, the worst one-day plummet since June of last year. The blue-chip index has plunged almost 500 points during the two-day rout, and follows big drops in European and Asian markets. QUIZ: How much do you know about the Dow? Investors were rattled by a confluence of problems around the world: A dour economic report in China, political unrest in Turkey and financial turmoil in Argentina.
January 5, 2014 |
California is home to both Silicon Valley and Hollywood, two of the world's greatest wealth-producing engines, and much of the state enjoys tremendous affluence. By some estimates, my own town of Palo Alto has the world's highest per capita concentration of billionaires. But California also has pockets of enormous poverty. The U.S. Census recently estimated that when both income and living costs are taken into account, 24% of Californians live in poverty, the highest poverty rate of any state.
December 18, 2013 |
WASHINGTON - Federal Reserve Chairman Ben S. Bernanke said Wednesday that central bank policymakers decided to modestly reduce a key stimulus program because of "meaningful" progress in the jobs market, but emphasized the economy "has much farther to travel. " "The recovery clearly remains far from complete," Bernanke said in his final scheduled news conference. To emphasize that point, Bernanke and his colleagues on the Federal Open Market Committee also decided to send a strong signal that they were committed to continuing to try to stimulate the economy.