Federal Reserve raises key interest rate 0.75%

A move to try to calm inflation

The Federal Reserve said on Wednesday that it is raising its benchmark interest rate by three-quarters of a percentage point, the sharpest hike since 1994, as it seeks to combat the fiercest surge in U.S. inflation in four decades.

The U.S. central bank set its target rate in the range of 1.5 to 1.75%. The federal funds rate, which controls how much banks pay to borrow money from each other, affects borrowing costs for consumers and businesses.

The Fed had previously suggested it was likely to boost rates by half a percentage point at each of its three meetings this year, but recent signals that inflation is accelerating spurred policymakers to move more aggressively to slow economic growth in a bid to tame prices

https://www.cbsnews.com/

Chinese Economy Grew More Than 18% in First Quarter

Indicators show growth of 30% or more from a year earlier

China’s economy surged 18.3% in the first quarter from a year earlier, a record rate of growth that reflected the recovery from a deep coronavirus-induced trough in early 2020 and the continued momentum of the world’s second largest economy.

The rate of gross domestic product growth in the first three months of 2021 was sharply higher than the 6.5% year-over-year growth recorded in the final quarter of 2020, though it fell short of the 19.2% growth expected by economists polled by The Wall Street Journal.

Analysts had anticipated GDP growth in the first three months of the year to jump sharply when compared with the year-earlier period, when the Chinese economy suffered a historic 6.8% contraction as the coronavirus’ initial emergence forced Beijing to shut down large swaths of the country.

In recent weeks, China has reported economic indicators showing growth of 30% or more from a year earlier.

https://www.wsj.com/

S&P, Dow surge to record highs after strong jobs report

The U.S. economy added 916,000 jobs in March

U.S. equity markets raced to all-time highs Monday as traders celebrated the stronger-than-expected March jobs report. The Dow Jones Industrial Average climbed 372 points, or 1.12%, while the S&P 500 and the Nasdaq Composite advanced 1.44% and 1.67%, respectively. The gains ran both the Dow and the S&P 500 to fresh record highs.

The U.S. economy added 916,000 jobs in March as the service sector continued to see growth amid the reopening of the economy, the Labor Department said Friday. Additionally, the unemployment rate fell to 6%, the lowest since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic. Markets were closed on Friday in observance of Good Friday.

Looking at stocks, Alphabet Inc.’s Google unit scored a major victory over Oracle Corp. in a copyright dispute after the U.S. Supreme Court overturned a lower court’s ruling, finding that the former’s use of the latter’s software code in its Android operating system constituted fair use. The ruling means Google will not have to pay potentially as much as $30 billion in damages, Reuters reported, citing two people with knowledge of the situation.

https://www.foxbusiness.com/