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The Federal Reserve Holds Its Fire
The Federal Reserve passed on the opportunity to make it two meetings in a row in which it had voted to raise interest rates, when its FOMC gathering concluded with the decision to stand pat on borrowing costs at this time. This widely expected decision came about even as a pair of strong economic reports had been issued earlier today. Read more
The Beige Book: A Look At The U.S. Economy At Year End

The Federal Reserve provided a look at the nation's economy at the turn of the year and indicated that the upturn was proceeding at a modest pace on average across most regions of the country. Better manufacturing metrics, generally decent retailing numbers (with the exception of a disappointing holiday season), and improving employment data underscored the generally decent outlook in place as we begin 2017.

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The Federal Reserve Raises Interest Rates As Expected
An increasingly transparent Federal Reserve, which has widely telegraphed its intention to raise interest rates before the end of the year did just that minutes ago when the FOMC lifted the federal funds rate target from 0.50% to 0.75%. That was the first such move in a year. The action and the magnitude of the increase both had been expected. The stock market, not surprised by the outcome of the meeting, has responded with a shrug, with prices edging up modestly in the minutes following the bank's release, before subsequently giving back those gains in a modest retreat. Read more
Non-Manufacturing Activity Slows Its Rate Of Growth In October
Economic activity in the key non-manufacturing sector grew in October on an absolute basis, for the 81st month in a row, according to the nation's purchasing managers. In all, such activity registered a reading of 54.8 last month. That was comfortably above the neutral score of 50.0, which separates an expanding services sector from one that is contracting. Read more
The Federal Reserve Stands Pat On The Interest Rate Front, As Expected
The Federal Reserve has voted to keep short-term interest rates unchanged. This meant that the Fed has now held rates at their present level throughout the year, thus far. Last December, the bank shifted gears, raising borrowing costs slightly for the first time in nearly a decade. However, as yet, there has been no follow through, in part as the economy had wilted in the first half. The next Fed meeting, in mid-December, could see a rate hike, as the election will be over by that time. But there is no assurance that scenario will unfold. 
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Beige Book Shows A Continuing Constructive Economic Outlook
The Federal Reserve has issued its periodic Beige Book economic summation within the last hour and there were no surprises that would undermine in either the economy or the stock market. In fact, minutes after the widely anticipated release came out, the equity market's gains, already rather impressive today, were solidified even further, with the day's gain in the Dow Jones Industrial Average briefly rising toward 90 points before settling back again. Read more
The Employment Situation Holds Few Big Surprises
The widely anticipated employment report for September, issued earlier this morning, held few notable surprises. Specifically, the nation added 156,000 new positions last month, which was some 20,000 below the latest forecasted increase of 175,000. Earlier in the week, the consensus expectation had been for 165,000 jobs to be added. Read more
Existing Home Sales Ease Slightly In August 2016
Sales of existing homes eased back a tad last month, with the report issued just moments ago affirming that such transactions totaled an annualized 5.33 million homes. This was the second straight month in which sales had dipped, with the latest decline a scant 0.9%.    
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The Federal Reserve, Once Again, Holds The Line On Interest Rates
The Federal Reserve again looked at the possibility of raising interest rates, and as it has done on all previous Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) meetings this year, opted to stay the course. To be sure, while some members had counseled for the need to possibly hike borrowing costs at this time, the majority felt it would be better to stand aside. However, the FOMC strongly hinted that it would still raise rates this year. The rate decision had been widely expected. Read more
Industrial Production Falls Back In August, And Capacity Use Also Weakens
Following on the heels earlier this morning of a weak report on retail spending across the country, the U.S. Commerce Department has reported that industrial production at the nation's factories, mines, and utilities also faltered last month, as did capacity utilization at U.S. facilities. Read more
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