US Federal Reserve cuts interest rates for second time

US Federal Reserve cuts interest rates for second time
# 18 September 2019 22:34 (UTC +04:00)

The US central bank has cut interest rates for the second time since 2008 amid concerns about slowing global growth and trade wars, APA reports citing BBC.

The Federal Reserve lowered the target range for its key interest rate by 0.25%, to between 1.75% and 2%.

The bank said the cut is aimed at shoring up the US economy, amid "uncertainties" about future growth.

But officials were divided about the move and over the need for future rises.

Seven members of the Federal Reserve Open Markets Committee, which sets the rates, voted in favour of Wednesday's cut, including Federal Reserve chair Jerome Powell.

Two members wanted to hold the rate steady, while one wanted to cut further.

European Council President Donald Tusk and Britain’s Prime Minister Boris Johnson are due to hold bilateral talks on Brexit on the sidelines of a U.N. session in New York next week, according to an official with the bloc, APA reports citing Reuters.

Both are due to attend the United Nations General Assembly gathering though the exact timing of their bilateral meeting is yet to be confirmed.

The EU has pushed back this week against Johnson’s assertions that a new Brexit deal was in the making and warned Britain was heading for a damaging, chaotic split as soon as Oct. 31.

EU leaders will meet for a make-or-break summit in Brussels two weeks before Britain’s departure date.

Cutting rates - which US President Donald Trump has pushed the Fed to do more aggressively - helps fuel economic activity, by making borrowing money cheaper for businesses and consumers alike.

But with interest rates in the US already low by historic standards - and much of the economic uncertainty caused by White House actions - analysts have raised questions about how much rate cuts will help.

US markets fell after the Fed announced the cut on Wednesday.

Mr Trump, who has repeatedly attacked Mr Powell, immediately lambasted the bank's decision on Twitter: "Jay Powell and the Federal Reserve Fail Again. No "guts," no sense, no vision! A terrible communicator!"