07 June 2012 17:52 [Source: ICIS news]
WASHINGTON (ICIS)--The ?xml:namespace>
Speaking before the Joint Economic Committee of Congress, Bernanke cautioned that any major improvement in the
Noting that the
But that sort of more rapid improvement in
While US households have increased spending somewhat and consumer confidence is up from last year’s levels, “households and businesses still appear quite cautious about the economy”, he said.
“For example, according to surveys, households continue to rate their income prospects as relatively poor and do not expect economic conditions to improve significantly,” Bernanke said in his testimony.
“Similarly, concerns about developments in Europe,
“Concerns about sovereign debt and the health of banks in a number of euro-area countries continue to create strains in global financial markets,” Bernanke told the panel.
“The crisis in Europe has affected the
Bernanke said that while European policymakers have taken steps to contain the crisis, he indicated that government and financial leaders in
More action by those leaders, he said, “will likely be needed to stabilise euro-area banks, calm market fears about sovereign finances, achieve a workable fiscal framework for the euro area and lay the foundations for long-term growth”.
In the meantime, Bernanke added, “the situation in Europe poses significant risks to the
Against those risks, he said, “the Federal Reserve remains prepared to take action as needed to protect the
Paul Hodges studies key influences shaping the chemical industry in Chemicals and the Economy
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