US Fed lowers key interest rate a third time

Fed cuts interest rates for third time, but signals pause in easing

Fed Cuts Rates Again To Boost A Slowing Economy

The Fed has now lowered its benchmark rate at each of the last three meetings, essentially to offset the adverse effects of the U.S.

Things worth watching: commentary from Powell on the Fed's decision in mid-October to resume organic balance sheet growth, in addition to whether there will be dissents. "The more important outcome is they removed the phrase 'act as appropriate.' It looks like the market is taking that to mean that there will be a pause in the declining rate path they were on beforehand". That postpones what could well were a disruptive exit, impartial after the Fed meeting concluded, that will most likely like damaged the United Kingdom and European economies.

The Fed's description of the US economy on Wednesday remained largely unchanged, with labor markets said to be "strong", and economic activity "rising at a moderate rate".

He has often pointed to similar rate cuts in 1995 and 1998 as precedents.

In July, the Fed cut its rate for the first time in more than 10 years.

Trump, in a departure from his White House predecessors who refrained from commenting on Fed policy, has made a habit of criticizing the US central bank for decisions he argues kept borrowing costs too high for too long.

The governors are nominated by the US president, confirmed by the Senate, and serve 14-year terms.

However, profit growth forecasts for the next four quarters have been revised lower, even as expectations for the decline in third quarter earnings has shrunk to 1.6%, compared with a 2.2% fall at the start of the month.

The Fed sets a target range for the rate banks charge each other for overnight lending, known as the federal funds rate.

Regardless, the USA economy is still growing.

"We think any attempt by Chair Powell today to persuade his colleagues to signal an intention to keep cutting rates would be met with real resistance, and we doubt that Mr. Powell feels the need to pick that fight at this point", said Ian Shepherdson, the chief economist at Pantheon Macroeconomics. In turn, Chairman Powell's position could have just laid the groundwork for another leg higher for the Dow Jones, Nasdaq 100 and S&P 500 as the central bank stands to protect economic expansion.

Although Trump has boasted about the strength of the economy, growth has slowed this year as the impact of tax cuts has faded and manufacturing has been hit by the trade war with China. While St. Louis Fed President James Bullard voted for a 50-basis-point cut in September, he was less dovish in the Wednesday meeting and voted in line with the majority for a 25-point cut.

As with the September statement, the FOMC cited the implications of global developments in deciding to lower the target range for the central bank's benchmark rate to 1.5 per cent to 1.75 per cent. Powell also noted in the press conference that the risks associated with trade tensions and Brexit show signs of improving.

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