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The Fed cuts rates for the first time in over a decade

INTEREST RATES set by the Federal Reserve have been rising since 2015. The gradual approach, explained the Fed’s chairman, Jerome Powell, last September, was intended to leave time to see how well the economy could absorb each raise. “So far the economy has performed very well, and very much in keeping with our expectations,” he said back then.Now America is being treated to what some are calling “Powell’s pirouette”. On July 31st Mr Powell announced America’s first interest-rate cut in over a decade, of 0.25 percentage points (see chart). At the press conference after the announcement he blamed weak global growth, trade policy uncertainty and muted inflation. “We’re trying to sustain the expansion,” he said.
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