Speech by Governor Tiff Macklem - Sept 7th 2023

Speech by Governor Tiff Macklem/Discours du gouverneur Tiff Macklem - Sept 7th 2023

FEDERAL RESERVE hikes rates by a quarter percentage point, indicates increases are near an end

The Federal Reserve on Wednesday enacted a quarter percentage point interest rate increase, expressing caution about the recent banking crisis and indicating that hikes are nearing an end.

Along with its ninth hike since March 2022, the rate-setting Federal Open Market Committee noted that future increases are not assured and will depend largely on incoming data.

“The Committee will closely monitor incoming information and assess the implications for monetary policy,” the FOMC’s post-meeting statement said. “The Committee anticipates that some additional policy firming may be appropriate in order to attain a stance of monetary policy that is sufficiently restrictive to return inflation to 2 percent over time.“

That wording is a departure from previous statements which indicated “ongoing increases” would be appropriate to bring down inflation. Stocks vacillated during a press conference. Some took Fed Chair Jerome Powell’s comments to mean that the central bank may be nearing the end of its rate hiking cycle.

Canada Inflation Report- Consumer Price Index, December 2022

The Consumer Price Index (CPI) rose 6.3% year over year in December, following a 6.8% increase in November.

Excluding food and energy, prices rose 5.3% on a yearly basis in December, following a gain of 5.4% in November.

The headline CPI grew at a slower pace largely due to slower growth in prices for gasoline. Additional deceleration came from homeowners' replacement cost, fuel oil and other owned accommodation expenses, as well as from various durable goods. Slower price growth was offset by increases in mortgage interest cost, clothing and footwear and personal care supplies and equipment.

On a monthly basis, the CPI fell 0.6% in December following a 0.1% gain in November. The monthly decline in December is the largest since April 2020, mostly driven by gasoline prices, which also posted their largest monthly decline since April 2020. On a seasonally adjusted monthly basis, the CPI was down 0.1% in December 2022.

Prices for gasoline and fuel oil fall month over month

Consumers paid 13.1% less at the pump in December compared with November, the largest monthly decline since April 2020. This reflected lower prices for crude oil amid concerns of a slowing global economy, as well as reduced demand following an increase in COVID-19 cases in China. On a yearly basis, prices for gasoline rose 3.0% in December after a 13.7% increase in November.

Lower crude oil prices were also reflected in a 14.8% month-over-month decline in prices for fuel oil and other fuels. On a year-over-year basis, this led to a smaller increase in December (+51.2%) than in November (+73.4%).

Prices for durable goods decelerate

Growth in prices for durable goods slowed to 4.7% year over year in December after a 5.3% increase in November, with prices decelerating for the third consecutive month.

Prices for household appliances rose at a slower pace in December (+2.8%) than in November (+7.4%), the result of the largest month-over-month decline (-4.1%) on record. Similarly, consumers paid 6.4% more, year over year, for furniture, compared with an 8.1% increase in November. These slowdowns in price growth occurred amid easing supply chain pressures and lower shipping costs, as well as softer demand.

For the third month in a row, yearly price growth slowed for passenger vehicles (+7.2%), which may reflect slowing demand for used vehicles.

Chart 3  [Chart 3: Price growth trending downwards for some durable goods]
Price growth trending downwards for some durable goods[Chart 3: Price growth trending downwards for some durable goods]

Homeowners' replacement cost and other owned accommodation expenses continue to grow at a slower pace

On a year-over-year basis, homeowners' replacement cost (+4.7%) and other owned accommodation expenses (+2.5%) continued to slow as the housing market continued to show signs of cooling, putting downward pressure on the CPI.

The mortgage interest cost index continued to put upward pressure on the CPI amid the ongoing higher interest rate environment, rising 18.0% on a year-over-year basis in December following a 14.5% increase in November.

Grocery prices grow at a slightly slower pace

Year over year, prices for food purchased from stores decelerated marginally in December (+11.0%) compared with November (+11.4%), with price growth hovering around 11% for the last five months.

Prices in December rose at a slower pace for a number of food items, including non-alcoholic beverages (+16.6%), bakery products (+13.5%), coffee and tea (+13.2%), other food preparations (+11.5%) and preserved fruit and fruit preparations (+7.2%).

Slowing price growth for groceries was offset by prices for fresh vegetables, which rose 13.6% in December following an 11.2% increase in November. Accelerated price growth was widespread across vegetables, including tomatoes (+21.9%) and other fresh vegetables (+11.7%) amid unfavourable weather in growing regions.

Prices for personal care supplies and equipment continue to grow at a faster rate

Prices for personal care supplies and equipment grew 9.9% year over year in December, the largest increase since February 1983. Price growth has trended upward since April 2021 as a result of broad-based increases among personal soap, toiletry items and cosmetics, oral-hygiene products and other personal care supplies and equipment.

Bank of Canada increases policy interest rate by 50 basis points, continues quantitative tightening

The Bank of Canada today increased its target for the overnight rate to 3¾%, with the Bank Rate at 4% and the deposit rate at 3¾%. The Bank is also continuing its policy of quantitative tightening.

Inflation around the world remains high and broadly based. This reflects the strength of the global recovery from the pandemic, a series of global supply disruptions, and elevated commodity prices, particularly for energy, which have been pushed up by Russia’s attack on Ukraine. The strength of the US dollar is adding to inflationary pressures in many countries. Tighter monetary policies aimed at controlling inflation are weighing on economic activity around the world. As economies slow and supply disruptions ease, global inflation is expected to come down.

In the United States, labour markets remain very tight even as restrictive financial conditions are slowing economic activity. The Bank projects no growth in the US economy through most of next year. In the euro area, the economy is forecast to contract in the quarters ahead, largely due to acute energy shortages. China’s economy appears to have picked up after the recent round of pandemic lockdowns, although ongoing challenges related to its property market will continue to weigh on growth. Overall, the Bank projects that global growth will slow from 3% in 2022 to about 1½% in 2023, and then pick back up to roughly 2½% in 2024. This is a slower pace of growth than was projected in the Bank’s July Monetary Policy Report (MPR).

In Canada, the economy continues to operate in excess demand and labour markets remain tight. The demand for goods and services is still running ahead of the economy’s ability to supply them, putting upward pressure on domestic inflation. Businesses continue to report widespread labour shortages and, with the full reopening of the economy, strong demand has led to a sharp rise in the price of services.

The effects of recent policy rate increases by the Bank are becoming evident in interest-sensitive areas of the economy: housing activity has retreated sharply, and spending by households and businesses is softening. Also, the slowdown in international demand is beginning to weigh on exports. Economic growth is expected to stall through the end of this year and the first half of next year as the effects of higher interest rates spread through the economy. The Bank projects GDP growth will slow from 3¼% this year to just under 1% next year and 2% in 2024. 

In the last three months, CPI inflation has declined from 8.1% to 6.9%, primarily due to a fall in gasoline prices. However, price pressures remain broadly based, with two-thirds of CPI components increasing more than 5% over the past year. The Bank’s preferred measures of core inflation are not yet showing meaningful evidence that underlying price pressures are easing. Near-term inflation expectations remain high, increasing the risk that elevated inflation becomes entrenched.

The Bank expects CPI inflation to ease as higher interest rates help rebalance demand and supply, price pressures from global supply disruptions fade, and the past effects of higher commodity prices dissipate. CPI inflation is projected to move down to about 3% by the end of 2023, and then return to the 2% target by the end of 2024.

Given elevated inflation and inflation expectations, as well as ongoing demand pressures in the economy, the Governing Council expects that the policy interest rate will need to rise further. Future rate increases will be influenced by our assessments of how tighter monetary policy is working to slow demand, how supply challenges are resolving, and how inflation and inflation expectations are responding. Quantitative tightening is complementing increases in the policy rate. We are resolute in our commitment to restore price stability for Canadians and will continue to take action as required to achieve the 2% inflation target.

加拿大银行今天将隔夜利率目标提高至 3¾%,银行利率为 4%,存款利率为 3¾%。世行还继续实施量化紧缩政策。 世界各地的通货膨胀率仍然很高且基础广泛。这反映了全球从大流行中复苏的力度、一系列全球供应中断以及商品价格上涨,尤其是能源价格,这些价格因俄罗斯对乌克兰的袭击而推高。美元走强正在加剧许多国家的通胀压力。旨在控制通胀的紧缩货币政策正在给全球经济活动带来压力。随着经济放缓和供应中断的缓解,预计全球通胀将下降。 在美国,即使限制性金融条件正在放缓经济活动,劳动力市场仍然非常紧张。世行预计明年大部分时间美国经济都不会增长。在欧元区,预计未来几个季度经济将收缩,主要是由于严重的能源短缺。在最近一轮大流行的封锁之后,中国经济似乎已经回升,尽管与其房地产市场相关的持续挑战将继续对增长构成压力。总体而言,世行预计全球增长将从 2022 年的 3% 放缓至 2023 年的 1.5% 左右,然后在 2024 年回升至约 2.5%。这比世行 7 月份货币政策中的预测要慢报告 (MPR)。 在加拿大,经济继续在需求过剩的情况下运行,劳动力市场依然紧张。对商品和服务的需求仍然超过经济的供应能力,给国内通胀带来上行压力。企业继续报告劳动力普遍短缺,随着经济的全面重新开放,强劲的需求导致服务价格急剧上涨。

央行近期政策加息的影响在经济中对利率敏感的领域变得越来越明显:房地产活动急剧萎缩,家庭和企业的支出正在放缓。此外,国际需求放缓开始影响出口。由于高利率的影响在整个经济中蔓延,预计经济增长将在今年年底和明年上半年停滞不前。世行预计 GDP 增长将从今年的 3¼% 放缓至明年的略低于 1% 和 2024 年的 2%。 过去三个月,CPI 通胀率从 8.1% 下降到 6.9%,主要是由于汽油价格下跌。然而,价格压力仍然广泛存在,三分之二的 CPI 组成部分在过去一年中上涨了 5% 以上。央行首选的核心通胀指标尚未显示出潜在价格压力正在缓解的有意义的证据。近期通胀预期仍然很高,增加了高通胀变得根深蒂固的风险。 世行预计,随着利率上升有助于重新平衡供需、全球供应中断带来的价格压力消退,以及过去商品价格上涨的影响消散,CPI 通胀将有所缓解。预计到 2023 年底,CPI 通胀率将下降到 3% 左右,然后到 2024 年底回到 2% 的目标。 鉴于通胀和通胀预期上升,以及经济中持续存在的需求压力,管委会预计政策利率将需要进一步上调。未来加息将受到我们对收紧货币政策如何减缓需求、供应挑战如何解决以及通胀和通胀预期如何响应的评估的影响。量化紧缩是对政策利率上调的补充。我们坚定地致力于恢复加拿大人的物价稳定,并将继续根据需要采取行动,以实现 2% 的通胀目标。

Fed raises rates by another 0.75%, pledges more hikes to fight inflation

The Federal Reserve on Wednesday raised benchmark interest rates by another three-quarters of a percentage point and indicated it will keep hiking well above the current level.

In its quest to bring down inflation running near its highest levels since the early 1980s, the central bank took its federal funds rate up to a range of 3%-3.25%, the highest it has been since early 2008, following the third consecutive 0.75 percentage point move.

Stocks gave up earlier gains after the announcement, with the Dow Jones Industrial Average dropping more than 200 points. Traders were concerned that the Fed is remaining more hawkish for longer than some had anticipated. Projections from the meeting indicated that the Fed expects to raise rates by at least 1.25 percentage points in its two remaining meetings this year.

The increases that started in March and from a point of near-zero mark the most aggressive Fed tightening since it started using the overnight funds rate as its principal policy tool in 1990. The only comparison was in 1994, when the Fed hiked a total of 2.25 percentage points; it would begin cutting rates by July of the following year.

Along with the massive rate increases, Fed officials signaled the intention of continuing to hike until the funds level hits a “terminal rate,” or end point of 4.6% in 2023. That implies a quarter-point rate hike next year but no decreases.

The “dot plot” of individual members’ expectations doesn’t point to rate cuts until 2024. Fed Chairman Jerome Powell and his colleagues have emphasized in recent weeks that it is unlikely rate cuts will happen next year, as the market had been pricing.

Federal Open Market Committee members indicate they expect the rate hikes to have consequences. The funds rate on its face addresses the rates that banks charge each other for overnight lending, but it bleeds through to many consumer adjustable-rate debt instruments, such as home equity loans, credit cards and auto financing.

In their quarterly updates of estimates for rates and economic data, officials coalesced around expectations for the unemployment rate to rise to 4.4% by next year from its current 3.7%. Increases of that magnitude often are accompanied by recessions.

Along with that, they see GDP growth slowing to 0.2% for 2022, rising slightly in the following years to a longer-term rate of just 1.8%. The revised forecast is a sharp cut from the 1.7% estimate in June and comes following two consecutive quarters of negative growth, a commonly accepted definition of recession.

The hikes also come with the hopes that headline inflation will drift down to 5.4% this year, as measured by the Fed’s preferred personal consumption expenditures price index, which last showed inflation at 6.3% in August. The summary of economic projections then sees inflation falling back to the Fed’s 2% goal by 2025.

Core inflation excluding food and energy is expected to decline to 4.5% this year, little changed from the current 4.6% level, before ultimately falling to 2.1% by 2025. (The PCE reading has been running well below the consumer price index.)

The reduction in economic growth came even though the FOMC’s statement massaged language that in July described spending and production as having “softened.” This meeting’s statement noted that “Recent indicators point to modest growth in spending and production.” Those were the only changes in a statement that received unanimous approval.

Otherwise, the statement continued to describe job gains as “robust” and noted that “inflation remains elevated.” The statement also noted again that “ongoing increases in the target rate will be appropriate.“

The dot plot showed virtually all members on board with the higher rates in the near term, though there were some variations in subsequent years. Six of the 19 “dots” were in favor of taking rates to a 4.75%-5% range next year, but the central tendency was to 4.6%, which would put rates in the 4.5%-4.75% area. The Fed targets its fund rate in quarter-point ranges.

The chart indicated as many as three rate cuts in 2024 and four more in 2025, to take the longer-run funds rate down to a median outlook of 2.9%.

Markets have been bracing for a more aggressive Fed.

Traders had fully priced in the 0.75 percentage point move and even had assigned an 18% chance of a full percentage point move, according to CME Group data. Futures contracts just prior to Wednesday’s meeting implied a 4.545% funds rate by April 2023.

The moves come amid stubbornly high inflation that Powell and his colleagues spent much of last year dismissing as “transitory.” Officials relented in March of this year, with a quarter-point hike that was the first increase since taking rates to zero in the early days of the Covid pandemic.

Along with the rate increases, the Fed has been reducing the amount of bond holdings it has accumulated over the years. September marked the beginning of full-speed “quantitative tightening,” as it is known in markets, with up to $95 billion a month in proceeds from maturing bonds being allowed to roll off the Fed’s $8.9 trillion balance sheet.

Bank of Canada's Carolyn Rogers says inflation won't come down overnight

In a Sept. 8 speech before Calgary Economic Development, Rogers said the policy rate decisions the central bank is making right now could take up to two years to have their full effect on inflation.

“Given the lag between changes to interest rates and their impact on inflation — and the considerable uncertainty surrounding the outlook — getting inflation all the way back to two per cent will take some time,” Rogers said in her second public speech since joining the bank. “We also know there could be bumps along the way.”

“Monetary policy works like a chain reaction or sequence of events,” Rogers added. “But that sequence takes time. Both history and research tell us that changes to the bank’s policy rate affect different households and sectors of the economy differently and at different speeds.”

Getting inflation all the way back to two per cent will take some time.

The speech came one day after the Bank of Canada’s decision to raise the policy rate by 75 basis points and bring the overnight rate up to 3.25 per cent, the highest it has been since 2008. With a tight labour market and rampant inflation, Rogers pointed to the rising risks of this inflation becoming entrenched as the reason for the move and the bank front-loading interest-rate increases.

In her economic progress report update, Rogers noted that while the consumer price index eased below the eight per cent mark to an annualized pace of 7.6 per cent, most of the declines were led by falling gasoline prices and that core inflation continued to move up. There remain uncertainties in the global commodity markets that could make the fight against inflation much more difficult.

Rogers also acknowledged the struggle Canadians are facing with rising borrowing costs on top of high inflation.

“The speed and size of these rate hikes have been unusual, and we know some Canadians are anxious to know whether they are working as intended to bring down inflation,” Rogers said. “We also know that, for many Canadians, higher rates are adding to the burden they are already facing with high inflation. But raising interest rates is necessary to bring inflation down.”
Some economists characterized Rogers’ speech as a more surgical approach compared to the “sledgehammer” monetary policy actions the central bank has been taking in recent months. Royce Mendes, managing director and head of macro strategy at Desjardins, wrote that central bankers are increasingly concerned that inflation expectations could become unmoored and prompt high inflation to become self-fulfilling.

“The speech made clear that the lags in monetary policy mean that central bankers are flying blind when it comes to how high rates need to rise,” Mendes said in a Thursday note following the speech. “That said, if monetary policymakers have to make a choice between a recession and controlling inflation in the near-term, their actions will be guided by the latter.”

Looking ahead, Rogers said the Bank of Canada would be keeping a close eye on global developments that could impact supply chains and volatile commodity prices.

Bank of Canada increases policy interest rate by 75 basis points, continues quantitative tightening

The Bank of Canada today increased its target for the overnight rate to 3¼%, with the Bank Rate at 3½% and the deposit rate at 3¼%. The Bank is also continuing its policy of quantitative tightening.

The global and Canadian economies are evolving broadly in line with the Bank’s July projection. The effects of COVID-19 outbreaks, ongoing supply disruptions, and the war in Ukraine continue to dampen growth and boost prices.

Global inflation remains high and measures of core inflation are moving up in most countries. In response, central banks around the world continue to tighten monetary policy. Economic activity in the United States has moderated, although the US labour market remains tight. China is facing ongoing challenges from COVID shutdowns. Commodity prices have been volatile: oil, wheat and lumber prices have moderated while natural gas prices have risen.

In Canada, CPI inflation eased in July to 7.6% from 8.1% because of a drop in gasoline prices.  However, inflation excluding gasoline increased and data indicate a further broadening of price pressures, particularly in services. The Bank’s core measures of inflation continued to move up, ranging from 5% to 5.5% in July. Surveys suggest that short-term inflation expectations remain high. The longer this continues, the greater the risk that elevated inflation becomes entrenched.

The Canadian economy continues to operate in excess demand and labour markets remain tight. Canada’s GDP grew by 3.3% in the second quarter. While this was somewhat weaker than the Bank had projected, indicators of domestic demand were very strong – consumption grew by about 9½% and business investment was up by close to 12%. With higher mortgage rates, the housing market is pulling back as anticipated, following unsustainable growth during the pandemic. The Bank continues to expect the economy to moderate in the second half of this year, as global demand weakens and tighter monetary policy here in Canada begins to bring demand more in line with supply.

Given the outlook for inflation, the Governing Council still judges that the policy interest rate will need to rise further. Quantitative tightening is complementing increases in the policy rate. As the effects of tighter monetary policy work through the economy, we will be assessing how much higher interest rates need to go to return inflation to target. The Governing Council remains resolute in its commitment to price stability and will continue to take action as required to achieve the 2% inflation target.

在加拿大,由于汽油价格下跌,7 月份 CPI 通胀从 8.1% 下降至 7.6%。然而,不包括汽油的通胀上升,数据表明价格压力进一步扩大,特别是在服务业。央行的核心通胀指标继续上升,7 月份从 5% 升至 5.5%。调查显示,短期通胀预期仍然很高。这种情况持续的时间越长,高通胀变得根深蒂固的风险就越大。
加拿大经济继续在需求过剩的情况下运行,劳动力市场依然紧张。加拿大第二季度的国内生产总值增长了 3.3%。虽然这比央行预测的要弱一些,但内需指标非常强劲——消费增长了约 9.5%,商业投资增长了近 12%。随着抵押贷款利率上升,在大流行期间出现不可持续的增长之后,房地产市场正如预期的那样回落。随着全球需求减弱,加拿大收紧货币政策开始使需求与供应更加一致,该银行继续预计今年下半年经济将放缓。
鉴于通胀前景,管委会仍判断政策利率需要进一步上调。量化紧缩是对政策利率上调的补充。随着收紧货币政策的影响在整个经济中发挥作用,我们将评估需要提高多少利率才能使通胀回到目标水平。管委会仍然坚定地致力于物价稳定,并将继续根据需要采取行动以实现 2% 的通胀目标。

Powell warns of ‘some pain’ ahead as the Fed fights to bring down inflation

  • Fed Chairman Jerome Powell on Friday pledged that the central bank will “use our tools forcefully” to attack inflation that is still running near its highest level in more than 40 years.
  • In his annual Jackson Hole, Wyoming, policy speech, Powell added that higher interest rates likely will persist “for some time. The historical record cautions strongly against prematurely loosening policy.”
  • The remarks come amid signs that inflation may have peaked but is not showing any marked signs of decline. Powell said the Fed will not be swayed by a month or two of data.
  • Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell delivered a stern commitment Friday to halting inflation, warning that he expects the central bank to continue raising interest rates in a way that will cause “some pain” to the U.S. economy.

    In his much-anticipated annual policy speech at Jackson Hole, Wyoming, Powell affirmed that the Fed will “use our tools forcefully” to attack inflation that is still running near its highest level in more than 40 years.
    Even with a series of four consecutive interest rate increases totaling 2.25 percentage points, Powell said this is “no place to stop or pause” even though benchmark rates are probably around an area considered neither stimulative nor restrictive to growth.

    “While higher interest rates, slower growth, and softer labor market conditions will bring down inflation, they will also bring some pain to households and businesses,” he said in prepared remarks. “These are the unfortunate costs of reducing inflation. But a failure to restore price stability would mean far greater pain.”

    Stocks fell after the Powell speech, with the Dow Jones Industrial Average off more than 500 points. Treasury yields were off their highs of the session.

    The remarks come amid signs that inflation may have peaked but is not showing any marked signs of decline.

    Two closely watched gauges, the consumer price index and the personal consumption expenditures price index, showed prices little changed in July, owing largely to a steep drop in energy costs.

    At the same time, other areas of the economy are slowing. Housing in particular is falling off rapidly, and economists expect that the huge surge in hiring over the past year and a half is likely to cool.

    However, Powell cautioned that the Fed’s focus is broader than a month or two of data, and it will continue pushing ahead until inflation moves down closer to its 2% long-range goal.

    “We are moving our policy stance purposefully to a level that will be sufficiently restrictive to return inflation to 2%,” he said. Looking into the future, the central bank leader added that “restoring price stability will likely require maintaining a restrictive policy stance for some time. The historical record cautions strongly against prematurely loosening policy.”

    The economy is coming off consecutive quarters of negative GDP growth, a commonly held definition of a recession. However, Powell and most other economists see the underlying economy as strong if slowing.

    “In essence, Powell is clearly stating that right now, fighting inflation is more important than supporting growth,” said Jeffrey Roach, chief economist at LPL Financial.

    To the point

    The speech was unusually brief.

    Whereas Fed leaders, including Powell, often have used the Jackson Hole symposium as an opportunity to outline broad policy shifts, Powell’s remarks Friday clocked in at just about eight minutes.

    He introduced the speech by noting that his “remarks will be shorter, my focus narrower, and my message more direct.”

    “Price stability is the responsibility of the Federal Reserve and serves as the bedrock of our economy,” Powell said. “Without price stability, the economy does not work for anyone.”

    Markets are awaiting the Fed’s next meeting in September to see if the rate-setting Federal Open Market Committee will enact a third consecutive 0.75 percentage point increase. Powell said the decision “will depend on the totality of the incoming data and the evolving outlook. At some point, as the stance of monetary policy tightens further, it likely will become appropriate to slow the pace of increases.”

    Traders are currently pricing a close call between a half-point and three-quarter point increase. As of Friday morning after Powell’s speech, the probability for a 0.75 point move was at 54.5%, according to the CME Group’s FedWatch measure.

    Looking to history

    The Fed is using a lesson from the past as its guidepost for current policy.

    Specifically, Powell said the inflation of 40 years ago provides the current Fed with three lessons: That central banks like the Fed are responsible for managing inflation, that expectations are critical and that “we must keep at it until the job is done.”

    Powell noted that the Fed’s failure to act forcefully in the 1970s caused a perpetuation of high inflation expectations that led to the draconian rate hikes of the early 1980s. In that case, then-Fed Chairman Paul Volcker pulled the economy into recession to tame inflation.

    While stating repeatedly that he doesn’t think recession is an inevitable outcome for the U.S. economy, Powell noted that managing expectations is critical if the Fed is going to avoid a Volcker-like outcome.

    In the early 1980s, “a lengthy period of very restrictive monetary policy was ultimately needed to stem the high inflation and start the process of getting inflation down to the low and stable levels that were the norm until the spring of last year,” Powell said. “Our aim is to avoid that outcome by acting with resolve now.”

    One concept molding Powell’s thinking is “rational inattention.” Essentially, that means people pay less attention to inflation when it is low and more when it is high.

    “Of course, inflation has just about everyone’s attention right now, which highlights a particular risk today: The longer the current bout of high inflation continues, the greater the chance that expectations of higher inflation will become entrenched,” he said.

Fed hikes interest rates by 0.75 percentage point for second consecutive time to fight inflation

The Federal Reserve on Wednesday enacted its second consecutive 0.75 percentage point interest rate increase, taking its benchmark rate to a range of 2.25%-2.5%.
Chair Jerome Powell said there will be a point where the Fed starts to slow hikes to assess their impact.
“We actually think we need a period of growth below potential in order to create some slack,” he said.

Fed lifts interest rates by most in three decades, anticipates policy rate rising to 3.8% by end of 2023

The Federal Reserve on Wednesday demonstrated it wanted to be aggressive in its fight against inflation, approving its largest interest rate hike in almost three decades and signaling that its benchmark rate will rise close to 4% by the end of next year.

At the central bank’s meeting that ended Wednesday, officials said they would hike the federal-funds target rate by three-quarters of a percentage point to between 1.5% and 1.75%.

In its “dot-plot forecast” of benchmark interest rates, the Fed said it planned to raise the fed funds rate to a mid-range of 3.4% by the end of this year and to 3.8% by the end of 2023. Fed officials anticipate being able to cut rates slightly in 2024.

There was only one dissent. Kansas City Fed President Esther George preferred a half percentage point hike.

In its policy statement, the Fed said it is strongly committed to getting inflation down to 2%. The central bank said overall U.S. economic activity has picked up from the weak first quarter.

The Fed said it would adjust its interest-rate policy if risks emerge that would “impede” the Fed from its goals.

The Fed’s aggressive tone comes as Fed Chairman Jerome Powell was sworn last month to a second four-year term. President Joe Biden met with Powell in the Oval Office earlier this month and the Biden White House has urged the Fed to combat inflation.

In a further sign of hawkishness, five of the 18 top Fed officials now expect the funds rate to rise slightly above 4% next year.

Over the last month, the Fed has signaled it wanted to raise rates by a half a percentage point, but the May consumer price data showed that inflation was still running at 40-year high levels.

Many economists are worried the aggressive Fed policy might push the economy into a recession.

Bank of Canada hikes another half a point to 1.5%, warns of more moves

The Bank of Canada took another aggressive step in its hiking cycle, raising its overnight interest rate by 50 basis points for a second consecutive time and warning that it may be even “more forceful” if needed to tackle inflation.

The central bank raised the overnight rate to 1.5 per cent at a policy decision on Wednesday and delivered a hawkish statement that aired worries about inflation pressures intensifying and becoming entrenched at elevated levels.

While the 50-basis-point hike was expected, the language will fuel speculation that policy makers led by Governor Tiff Macklem are considering a faster pace of tightening than they had been suggesting. Markets are pricing in another half-point increase at the July 13 meeting, before slowing the pace of tightening in the second half of this year. The central bank is seen stopping around the three per cent mark.

The central bank “is prepared to act more forcefully if needed to meet its commitment to achieve the two per cent inflation target,” the Bank of Canada said in the prepared statement.

“The risk of elevated inflation becoming entrenched has risen,” the officials said, adding that they would use their tools to return inflation to target and keep expectations “well-anchored.”

There’s little ambiguity about the key messaging and main points of the bank’s actions. The statement highlighted how inflation is well above target and could go higher before easing, with price pressures broadening. Officials also said the economy is “clearly” operating with excess demand while growth is poised to remain heated. 

The back-to-back jumbo increases are unprecedented since the bank began adjusting monetary policy at fixed decision dates in 2000, and are meant to be an overwhelming response to the stronger-than-anticipated inflation dogging the nation.

Policy makers conceded that inflation is rising faster than their April forecasts and “will likely move even higher in the near term before beginning to ease.”

Even with Wednesday’s increase, interest rates remain stimulative. The central bank estimates that its policy rate needs to rise to between two to three per cent in order for borrowing costs to no longer be inflationary. But its new hawkish comments could fuel a debate whether the central bank may need to increase rates beyond the neutral range and actively slow economic growth in order to contain three-decade-high inflation.

The bank said the housing market is “moderating” from “exceptionally” elevated levels of activity, while noting that consumer spending remains robust.

Bank of Canada hikes key interest rate 50 basis points for 1st time in 22 years

The Bank of Canada hiked its benchmark interest rate by half a percentage point to one per cent on Wednesday in its latest move to rein in high inflation.

The bank's rate impacts Canadian businesses and consumers by influencing the rates they pay and receive on things like mortgages, GICs and savings accounts.

The bank slashed its rate to barely above zero in March of 2020 when the pandemic began.

While the move helped the economy to weather the unprecedented uncertainty of COVID-19, in recent months, inflation has come roaring back to its highest level in decades, prompting the central bank to start unwinding all that cheap credit.

It's the second time in as many months that the bank has ratcheted its rate higher, and as such Wednesday's move is both the bank's first back-to-back rate hike since 2017, as well as its biggest single hike since the year 2000.

Economists were expecting the move, and with inflation flirting with six per cent, they expect more to come, at least until the central bank's rate gets up to two per cent — and possibly beyond.

Officials at the bank including governor Tiff Macklem will have more to say about the bank's decision at a press conference in Ottawa starting at 11 a.m. Wednesday. 

Year of the Tiger 2022: How to Bring You Year-long Good Luck for Horoscope in Chinese New Year

Find Your Zodiac Sign

Choose your date of birth and find out about your Chinese zodiac sign.

The Tiger is known as the king of all beasts in China. The zodiac sign Tiger is a symbol of strengthexorcising evils, and braveness. Many Chinese kids wear hats or shoes with a tiger image for good luck.

Ox and Goat are the luckiest zodiac signs in the year of 2022. For those born in the years of the RatSnakeMonkeyPig and Dog, you will need to make comparatively more effort in order to make achievements. RabbitDragonHorse, and Rooster people are destined to enjoy a smooth life and good luck in making money this year. Tigers will encounter their 'birth sign year' (benmingnian本命年) in 2022. Wearing red will bring good luck in a birth sign year.