Investors Pleased By Yellen Comments

Dated: 04/02/2016

Views: 3905

Even though it took place less than two weeks after the last Fed meeting, Fed Chair Janet Yellen’s speech on Tuesday was by far the biggest event this week. Her message was well received by investors, and both stocks and bonds improved after her speech. Recent economic data had little impact, and mortgage rates ended the week lower.

The Fed statement from the March 16 Fed meeting presented a very gradual approach to tightening monetary policy. Over the last couple of weeks, however, several Fed officials have made the case for tightening monetary policy at a more rapid pace. On Tuesday, Yellen discussed the reasons to proceed cautiously with federal funds rate hikes. For one, economic troubles in other countries could slow the U.S. economy. According to Yellen, the Fed’s outlook for global economic growth is now “slightly weaker” than it was just three months ago. In addition, she expressed concern that the increase in core inflation in recent months could be due to temporary factors. She described other indicators which suggest that inflation could decline in coming months.

Yellen’s comments seemed consistent with recent economic data. The core PCE price index, the inflation indicator preferred by the Fed, showed that core inflation held steady at a 1.7% annual rate in February, below the Fed’s stated target level of 2%. Consumer spending in February matched the expected slight increase from January, but the results for January were revised significantly lower, causing economists to reduce their forecasts for first-quarter gross domestic product (GDP).

Source: MBS Quoteline

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David Sarnowski

David is a seasoned real estate professional, specializing in residential sales, rentals and investment properties. David is a 15 year resident of the New Jersey Gold Coast, with the local knowledge n....

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