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‘Probably, maybe definitely’ — Trump on national emergency: Your Friday finance briefing

US Fed Chair Jerome Powell said the central bank can be pretty patient when it comes to the next move in further raising interest rates, as the officials study whether the economy will slow down.

“Especially with inflation low and under control, we have the ability to be patient and watch patiently and carefully as we … figure out which of these two narratives is going to be the story of 2019,” Powell told an audience at the Economic Club of Washington.

Powell also voiced warnings over growing US debt. “I’m very worried about it,” he said. “It’s a long-run issue that we definitely need to face, and ultimately, will have no choice but to face.” Total U.S. debt is nearly 22 trillion Dollars, 16 trillion of which the public owes.

The European Central Bank is likely to debate multi-year loans to financial institutions in the upcoming months as world markets now focus on a “fragile and fluid” context in the global economy, the continental central bank’s minutes of its last December meeting revealed.

The ECB which ended its quantitative easing program appeared to be putting alternatives out as even the German economy began to show signs of recession amid crises in Italy and France. It said that interest rates are to stay at their current level through the summer of 2019.

The ongoing US government shutdown is now 24 hours short of its longest ever in history, as nearly a million federal workers continue to work without paychecks with President Donald Trump trumpeting his threat of a national emergency.

“If this doesn’t work out, I probably will do it, maybe definitely,” he said about prospects of a national emergency during a visit to the southern border in Texas where he wants to build a wall with 5.7 billion he demands from the Congress.

Trump again attacked Democratic Congressional leaders Nancy Pelosi Chuck Schumer, comparing negotiations with them to those with China as, and describing the latter as “more honorable.”

Speaking of China, Trump‘s Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin told the media that Chinese Vice Premier Liu He is “most likely” going to pay a visit to Washington later this month to further negotiate for talks over the trade war. Additional negotiations in DC follow mid-level talks earlier this week in Beijing that boosted markets with optimism.

Stocks on both sides of the Pacific resumed rallying on the optimism, although those in Asia worried about Chinese economic health after weak inflation data. In the US, the S&P 500 and Dow Jones for the first time in September posted a five-day winning streak.

In the Brexit file, Britain’s Prime Minister Theresa May found support from her Japanese counterpart Shinzo Abe who was on an official trip to London. Abe told May “the whole world wanted” to avoid a no-deal Brexit. UK House of Commons is set to debate and vote on May’s deal with EU leaders next week, with almost all odds currently against the PM.


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