United States Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said there’s no chance of a currency war erupting. When asked whether investors should be concerned about the prospects of one, he said “no,” declining to elaborate during a press conference in Buenos Aires on Sunday.
President Donald Trump cast aside concerns about the Federal Reserve’s independence, saying he was “not happy” with the Fed’s recent interest rate increases. Trump told CNBC in an interview: “I don’t like all of this work that we’re putting into the economy and then I see rates going up.”
Latin American currencies fell against the dollar across the board on Wednesday as traders continued to focus on recent statements by key U.S. monetary policy makers.
A trade war with China, the European Union and other trading partners is casting some doubts about the U.S. economic future, Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell said on Tuesday. And the longer it goes, the more potential harm it could cause, Powell told the Senate Banking Committee at a hearing about the Fed's monetary policy and the economy.
Foreign banks and funds are set to benefit from a move by U.S. regulators to simplify a trading rule that foreign banks and regulators say has inadvertently complicated firms operating as far afield as Europe and Asia. The Federal Reserve, alongside other U.S. regulators, on Wednesday proposed rewriting the “Volcker Rule” introduced following the 2007-2009 financial crisis in a bid to simplify the regulation and make it easier for banks to comply.
Federal Reserve officials earlier this month suggested that another rate hike was on the way soon, while also noting several risks facing the economy, ranging from rising wage pressures to potential harm from the Trump administration's trade policies.
The dollar hovered near a four-month high on Tuesday, continuing to draw support from higher Treasury yields and upbeat prospects for the U.S. economy, leaving its major rivals such as the Euro struggling and other Latin American currencies including the Argentine peso down sharply.
The Federal Reserve on Wednesday left its benchmark interest rate unchanged, confirmed that inflation is near its 2% target, and strangely enough did not mention a word about the looming international trade confrontation. The central bank after a two-day meeting said inflation over the next 12 months should “run near” the 2% target, updating its language from March that indicated inflation would “move up” towards that level.
The Bank of England signaled on Thursday that it remains on course to lift interest rates in Britain this year and next, as figures showed a yearlong squeeze on consumers caused by a steep fall in the pound appears to be coming to an end.
The Federal Reserve is raising its benchmark interest rate to reflect a solid U.S. economy and signaling that it's sticking with a gradual approach to rate hikes for 2018 under its new chairman, Jerome Powell. The Fed said it expects to increase rates twice more this year. At the same time, it increased its estimate for rate hikes in 2019 from two to three, reflecting an expectation of faster growth and lower unemployment.