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  • 2019-05-22 07:00

    WASHINGTON (MNI) - The Mortgage Bankers Association Wednesday reported a modest rebound in mortgage activity in the May 17 week, with activity up 2.4% on a slight downtick in mortgage rates.

    Here are some of the key features of the report:

    - The Refinance Index rose by 8%, while the Purchase Index fell by 2% in the current week.

    - The 30-year average rate for a 30-year fixed mortgage fell further to 4.33% in the current week from 4.40% in the previous week, hitting its lowest point since January 2018.

    - The unadjusted purchasing index was up 7% from a year earlier.

    --MNI Washington Bureau; tel: +1 202-371-2121; email:

    [TOPICS: MAUDS$,M$U$$$,MK$$$$,M$$MO$]

  • 2019-05-21 12:10

    By Jean Yung

    WASHINGTON (MNI) - Federal Reserve Bank of Boston President Eric Rosengren said Tuesday that uncertainty over U.S.-China trade relations in light of otherwise healthy growth and a temporary decline in inflation calls for the Fed to be patient in raising or lowering short-term interest rates.

    "I see no clarion call to alter current policy in the near term. I view current policy as slightly accommodative and likely to be consistent with inflation returning to the Fed's 2% inflation target over time. This is likely to occur more rapidly if tariffs are imposed," he said in remarks prepared for The Economic Club of New York.

  • 2019-05-21 12:03

    By Jean Yung

    WASHINGTON (MNI) - Recent weakness in U.S. inflation was likely exaggerated by one-off price moves in isolated categories, and low rates of increases in health care prices will continue to restrain overall levels, Federal Reserve economists said in interviews over the past week.

    While President Donald Trump's latest tariff hikes on Chinese imports could result in a modest boost to inflation, the effects are difficult to pinpoint and would be viewed as transitory, they said.

    Cyclical components of the Fed's favored personal consumption expenditures inflation gauge have stayed high, in line with a healthy economy and tight labor market, said San Francisco Fed economist Adam Shapiro.

  • 2019-05-20 12:53

    By David Robinson

    LONDON (MNI) - Bank of England Deputy Governor Ben Broadbent said that the negative impact of the Brexit process on business investment would be worse if business executives continued to take the view that the end was in sight.

    In a speech at Imperial College Business School Broadbent said that the evidence showed businesses which were expecting uncertainty to evaporate in the near future held off investing more than if uncertainty was expected to persist.

    Persistent speculation that there could be a resolution of Brexit soon only amplifies the hit to business investment.

    The following are key points from the speech:

    -The Brexit deadline for a deal to be agreed between the UK and the EU, allowing a transition period, was originally set for

  • 2019-05-20 11:12

    -BOE Carney And Colleagues Hearing Tues Cancelled; Problem Not With BOE

    LONDON (MNI) - Tuesday's scheduled hearing with Bank of England Governor Mark Carney and colleagues at the Treasury Select (TSC) Committee has been cancelled.

    A TSC official confirmed the cancellation but did not offer a reason, although Market News understands that the cancellation was triggered by the TSC and not by the Bank.

    Mark Carney, Deputy Governor Ben Broadbent, and external MPC members Silvana Tenreyro and Michael Saunders were scheduled to give evidence on the May Inflation Report at 0930 GMT.

    All TSC meetings scheduled for Tuesday have been cancelled and no alternative date for the MPC hearing has yet been proposed.

    --MNI London Bureau; tel: +44 203-586-2223; ema

  • 2019-05-20 01:05

    BEIJING (MNI) - China's central bank is confident and capable of maintaining the stability of the yuan exchange rate at a balanced level, according to Pan Gongsheng, vice governor of the People's Bank of China.

    In a statement on the PBOC website posted late on Sunday, Pan said that foreign capital inflows have increased and forex reserves have risen steadily since the beginning of this year.

    Pan, who is also the director of the State Administration of Foreign Exchange told the PBOC-run newspaper Financial News that healthy macroeconomic fundamentals, rapid credit growth and moderate monetary and financial conditions would provide strong support for the forex market and the yuan.

    He said the PBOC would carry out the necessary counter-cyclical adjustments and strength

  • 2019-05-19 17:03

    TOKYO (MNI) - Japan's economy is expected to post a contraction in the January-March period, hit by weak capital investment and private consumption.

    Economists are looking for preliminary Q1 GDP lower by 0.1% fall on quarter, or an annualized -0.2%.

  • 2019-05-17 11:35

    By Luke Heighton

    FRANKFURT (MNI) - The eurozone slowdown may prove temporary, the governor of the Bulgarian National Bank told MNI, but whether Europe emerges from the current soft patch by the second half of 2019 is uncertain.

    "The euro area's economy beat many economists' expectations in the first quarter.

  • 2019-05-17 01:51

    By Iris Ouyang

    BEIJING (MNI) - China's macro policies to boost the economy will help maintain stability through any escalation of the trade dispute with the U.S., the country's economic planning body said Friday.

    Here are the highlights from Friday's National Development of Reform Commission press briefing in Beijing:

    -The key for China through any trade dispute is to focus on its own business, Meng Wei, NDRC spokesperson said, with measures to ensure stable growth

    -China will continue with current macro, fiscal and monetary policies to help boost the domestic economy, with added focus on consumption in rural areas, the NDRC said.

    -The commission underlined that any fallout from the trade dispute was manageable as China's economy is resilient.

    -The gove

  • 2019-05-17 01:31

    TOKYO (MNI) - Japan's economy is expected to post a contraction in the January-March period, hit by weak capital investment and private consumption.

    Economists are looking for preliminary Q1 GDP lower by 0.1% fall on quarter, or an annualized -0.2%.