US economic growth slows during first half of 2012 – Fed

01 August 2012 20:25  [Source: ICIS news]

HOUSTON (ICIS)--US economic activity slowed somewhat during the first half of the year, as job growth remained sluggish and unemployment stayed high, the Federal Reserve said on Wednesday.

Much of the statement issued by the Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) was similar to the one from 20 June.

In both, the Fed said that business fixed investments has continued to advance and housing spending has been rising, albeit at a slower pace than earlier in the year.

The Federal Reserve still expects the economy to grow moderately during the upcoming quarters before picking up at a very gradual pace. As such, unemployment will decline slowly.

Also, it still expects inflation to remain at or below its target of 2%.

Meanwhile, the Fed maintained its warning about global financial markets, which threaten the US economy.

The rate-setting FOMC reiterated that the central bank anticipates that its record-low federal funds interest rate of 0%-0.25% will remain at that level “at least through late 2014”.

The rate has been at that unprecedented low level since December 2008.

The Fed also said that it would continue until year end its policy of purchasing more long-term securities in order to keep interest rates low.

The Federal Reserve said it would "provide additional accommodation as needed to promote a stronger economic recovery and sustained improvement in labour market conditions in a context of price stability".

The Fed made a similar, although differently worded, statement in its 20 June announcement.

However, it did not take any further actions aimed at stimulating the nation’s sluggish recovery.

By: Al Greenwood
+1 713 525 2645

AddThis Social Bookmark Button

For the latest chemical news, data and analysis that directly impacts your business sign up for a free trial to ICIS news - the breaking online news service for the global chemical industry.

Get the facts and analysis behind the headlines from our market leading weekly magazine: sign up to a free trial to ICIS Chemical Business.

Printer Friendly

Get access to breaking chemical news as it happens.
ICIS Global Petrochemical Index (IPEX)
ICIS Global Petrochemical Index (IPEX). Download the free tabular data and a chart of the historical index

Related Articles