Cost pressures are rising due to tariffs and transportation capacity issues. In response, manufacturers and retailers are raising prices in an effort to maintain margins.
Banking regulations require that financial institutions implement robust systems to monitor, manage and control risks related to investment activities.
Bank investment portfolios are an increasingly important part of balance sheet management. As portfolios have grown by 5.9 percent over the past year, according to the FDIC, they also produce a larger share of earnings.
As expected, the Federal Reserve raised its benchmark short-term interest rate for the first time in a year, pushing up the federal-funds rate by a quarter percentage point to between 0.50 percent
The Federal Reserve held short-term interest rates unchanged at its Nov. 2 meeting and hinted it expects to raise rates in December at the final gathering of 2016.
The Federal Open Market Committee in July decided to maintain the target range for federal funds at 0.25 percent to 0.50 percent following a meeting in Washington.
As expected, the Federal Open Market Committee decided to maintain the target range for federal funds at 0.25 percent to 0.50 percent following a two-day meeting last month in Washington.
Financial markets took a wild ride last year. As 2014 entered the home stretch, the plunge in the price of oil was the biggest story. Europe’s continued troubles and a slowdown in the Chinese economy muted the demand for oil.
As expected, the Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) ended its asset purchase program last month, after concluding there has been substantial improvement in the outlook for the labor market since the program began.
Over the last year, many banks entered into â€œlong-term relationshipsâ€ with their securities portfolios, a phrase coined by The Wall Street Journal. The newspaper said large banks in particular â€œpromisedâ€ that hundreds of billions of dollars of bonds would not be sold.
Prices of short-term Treasuries dropped earlier this month, pushing two-year note yields to the highest since September, after a report showing continued jobs-market strength boosted bets the Federal Reserve may consider raising interest rates sooner than forecast.
The number of mortgage applications fell to the lowest level in nearly two decades, the Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA) said recently. The Market Composite Index, a measure of mortgage loan application volume, decreased 160 percent on a seasonally adjusted basis from one year earlier. The purchase index decreased 35 percent over the same period to its lowest level since 1995.