Janet Yellen’s last day nears
Janet Yellen, the current Chairlady of the Federal Reserve made an appearance at New York University on Tuesday night, just weeks before the all-important Fed interest rate decision in December, where investors are pencilling in another interest rate rise in the US.
Janet Yellen gave nothing new away with regards to the Federal Reserve’s interest rate plans and left investors scratching their heads as to whether interest rates would be raised. Janet Yellen cited inflation as a major concern to the Federal Reserve and is something that many of her colleagues (herself included) can’t agree on. Markets still had the probability of a 0.25bp rate hike unchanged this morning, however these comments can’t be ignored – and as a result the US Dollar started the day ever so slightly weaker against a basket of currencies.
The US workforce shows positive signs
US jobless claims, which is the number of civilians filling for unemployment benefits fell this week after two straight weekly increases. This points to a healthy looking work force and job growth after the fallout from the recent hurricanes in the United States fed through into the labour market. Benefit claims had risen recently following a backlog of claims from Puerto Rico following damages to infrastructure also damaged by the two recent hurricanes.
Tonight at 7pm UK time the latest FOMC meeting minutes will be released. Recent reports ahead of the minutes being released have indicated that the US is likely to raise interest rates at December’s meeting, with J P Morgan putting an interest rate hike next month at 90%. An extremely productive labour market in the US is likely to outweigh any inflationary concerns, according to reports. Today’s jobless data certainly helps solidify this, but will the FOMC minutes tonight clarify this and the interest rate scheduled for December?