Category Archives: Central Banks

(BBG) Portugal, Ireland Bond Sales Show Conviction on ECB Rate Outlook

(BBG)

In one fell swoop, Portugal and Ireland completed a quarter of their refinancing for the year.

The two nations sold 4 billion euros ($4.6 billion) of bonds each via syndication Wednesday, compared with Portugal’s 15.4 billion euro target for 2019 and Ireland’s goal of between 14 and 18 billion euros. That follows banks underwriting around 21 percent of Belgium’s target issuance Tuesday.

Orders for Ireland’s 10-year syndication were above 18 billion euros, while those on Portugal’s were above 24 billion euros, according to people familiar with the matter. That’s despite European nations offering more than 30 billion euros in debt this week alone.

The robust demand for the bonds shows conviction among investors that the European Central Bank isn’t going to be able to raise borrowing costs against a backdrop of slowing economic growth and recession fears in the U.S. Their skepticism is also reflected in the yield on German bunds, which touched the lowest level in more than two years last week.

“The New Year has unleashed pent-up demand for sovereign and agency paper on the primary market, and we think this is set to continue,” said Ciaran O’Hagan, head of European rates strategy at Societe Generale SA. “The drive lower in yields has forced buyers out into the market.”

(ECO) Banco de Portugal já chumbou mais de uma centena de intermediários de crédito

(ECO) O Banco de Portugal recebeu 3.876 pedidos de autorização daqueles que pretendem ser intermediários de crédito desde o início do ano, até 22 de dezembro.

O Banco de Portugal (BdP) recebeu quase quatro mil pedidos de autorização para intermediário de crédito até 22 de dezembro, dos quais já recusou mais de uma centena. Foram aprovados 820 pedidos, e os restantes estão ainda em análise.Dois em cada dez intermediários já podem dar crédito Ler Mais

Desde o início do ano, a instituição liderada por Carlos Costa é responsável pela autorização e registo de todas as pessoas singulares ou coletivas que pretendam exercer a atividade de intermediário de crédito. Foram 3.876 aqueles já que mostraram interesse, de acordo com os dados do Banco de Portugal, e 114 os que foram chumbados.

Os 820 pedidos aprovados representam 21,1% do total, obtendo assim “luz verde” para operarem a partir de 1 de janeiro do novo ano.

Apesar de ainda não ter chegado ao fim, dezembro já é o mês em que o BdP recebeu mais pedidos, 736 no total, e também aquele em que foram aprovados mais, cerca de 322 processos.

Os interessados sabem a decisão da instituição no prazo de três meses desde a candidatura, e, se esta for positiva, o registo do intermediário será promovido pelo BdP nos 30 dias seguintes à aprovação.

Os intermediários de crédito facilitam a obtenção deste produto, mas não estão autorizados a conceder crédito, nem a intervir na comercialização de outros produtos ou serviços bancários, como, por exemplo, depósitos a prazo ou serviços de pagamento.

O.P. (BI) Global markets are plunging as the Fed’s ‘hawkish tone’ steals Christmas

O.P.

Conforme eu tinha previsto,
vem aí o maior bear market da história.
Que se segue ao maior e mais longo bull market de sempre.
Perfeitamente normal.
Não há practicamente nada que esteja bem no Mundo.
Era apenas uma questão de tempo.
Ainda por cima com os bancos centrais de todo o Mundo a inprimirem dinheiro desde 2007/2008…
E agora pelo menos a Federal Reserve já parou e está a retirar do mercado 50 biliões de dolares por mês.
Só não viu quem não quis.

FCMP



(BI)

Wall Street trader

Spencer Platt/Getty Images

  • Global stocks drop sharply after Fed raises rates and says monetary policy tightening will continue in 2019.
  • Investors had been hoping that the Fed and Chairman Jerome Powell would be explicitly dovish in his communications, but were left disappointed by the central bank’s tone.
  • It was a sea of red: US stocks dropped on Wednesday, with Asia and Europe following suit on Thursday.
  • All major European indexes are lower by around 1.5% in the first hour of the day. The Euro Stoxx 50 reached a 2016 low. 
  • You can follow the latest market moves at Markets Insider.

Stock markets around the world are tumbling Thursday after the US Federal Reserve dashed hopes that it would go into 2019 with a more dovish policy outlook.

The central bank’s Federal Open Market Committee unanimously voted to raise the fed funds rate by 25 basis points to a range of 2.25% to 2.5% on Wednesday, and said that it expects to continue raising rates in 2019, albeit at a slower pace than the four rate rises this year.

Investors had been hoping that the Fed and Chairman Jerome Powell would be explicitly dovish in his communications, but were left disappointed by the central bank’s tone.

“Investors were expecting a more dovish tone from Powell given the sharp fall in equity markets and challenging global macroeconomic conditions,” Hussein Sayed, Chief Market Strategist at FXTM said in an email Thursday morning. “All they got was a less hawkish tone.” 

“Despite many signs of global economic growth slowing, the Fed does not seem to be very concerned at this stage suggesting that monetary policy will continue to tighten albeit at a slower pace than previously projected,” he continued.

“What appeared to be even more concerning to equity investors is that Powell is not only ignoring Trump’s calls to pause the tightening cycle, but he is also not listening to them.”

Read more: Here’s how the Fed raises interest rates and why it matters

Powell’s comments and the Fed’s overall tone mean that markets are a sea of red Thursday morning, with both European and Asian stocks selling off sharply, and the major US indexes looking set to fall further when the open later in the day.

Here’s the scoreboard:

  • All major European indexes are lower by close to, or more than, 1.5%. Britain’s FTSE 100 has shed 1.3%, while Germany’s DAX is off 1.4%. The benchmark Euro Stoxx 50 reached a 2016 low. 
  • Asian equities were red across the board, with Japan’s Nikkei 225 the biggest casualty, losing 2.8% of its value on the day.
  • Chinese stocks were a little stronger, likely boosted by news that Beijing has resumed purchases of US soybeans. The Shanghai Composite, China’s benchmark index, was down 0.52% on the day.
  • US futures point to another bad day stateside. The S&P 500 dropped 1.5% on Wednesday, and is set to shed another 0.5% when the market opens. Both the Nasdaq and Dow Jones look likely to see similar losses.
  • Oil prices slumped on worries of slowing global growth. Brent crude tumbled 3.9%.



(EUobserver) ECB to reinvest €2.5tn from eurozone stimulus

(EUobserver) The Governing Council of the European Central Bank (ECB) decided on Thursday how to reinvest €2.5tn it has pumped into the economy since 2015 in the wake of the financial crisis in order to help interest and inflation rates go up again. The purchases, known as quantitative easing (QE), cease at the end of December 2018, but redemptions will continue to be reinvested in the public and corporate sectors.

(BBG) Carney Says BOE Ready for the Worst in Brexit Recession Warning

(BBG) Mark Carney said the Bank of England is prepared for the worst possible Brexit and that the U.K. faces the steepest economic slump since at least World War II if it crashes out of the European Union without a deal.

The stark warning from the governor sees the economy shrinking by 8 percent within a year and property prices plunging almost a third under a worst-case scenario, with Prime Minister Theresa May failing to get her Brexit plan past lawmakers. For context, the peak-to-trough drop in U.K. GDP in the financial crisis was just over 6 percent.

“Our job is not to hope for the best but to prepare for the worst,” Carney said in a press conference in London. “If there is one thing that you take from an avalanche of papers and numbers and the discussion today, it’s that the core of the U.K. financial system is ready for Brexit, whatever form it takes.”

In a no-deal scenario, questions about the credibility of the U.K. would send sterling into a tailspin, forcing the central bank forced to hike interest rates sharply to combat inflation.

Here are the main points in the “disorderly” Brexit scenario:

  • GDP drops 8%
  • House prices fall 30%
  • Commercial property prices plunge 48%
  • Sterling falls 25% to below parity with the dollar
  • Unemployment rises to 7.5%
  • Inflation accelerates to 6.5%
  • BOE benchmark rate rises to 5.5% and averages 4% over 3 years
  • Britain goes from net immigration to net outflow, reducing labor supply

The BOE analysis, carried out in response to a request from a committee of lawmakers, is the latest to highlight the dangers from having no new trade arrangements in place by the time Britain leaves the EU on March 29.

While the pound rose about 0.5 percent against the dollar as Carney spoke, that was because Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell simultaneously gave a speech that investors considered dovish. Powell also said the Fed was prepared for a full range of Brexit outcomes.

The BOE’s scenarios are likely to draw the ire of Brexit supporters who said the central bank was too gloomy before the 2016 referendum on Brexit. It warned then that there was a risk of recession in the months following a vote for Leave. The economy kept growing.

Former BOE policy maker Andrew Sentance tweeted that the analysis is “highly speculative and extreme” and will “add to the view that the Bank is getting unnecessarily involved in politics.”

May is pushing her EU Withdrawal Agreement, but it’s not clear she will have the numbers to get it through Parliament in a crunch vote on Dec. 11.

Read more: May spells out her case against another Brexit referendum

If it’s rejected, the U.K. will be on course to crash out into a legal limbo, with no special rules in place to regulate trade with the bloc. Earlier, the Treasury provided its own longer-term analysis, which also includes a hit to growth and incomes under any Brexit option.

The BOE made clear that a chaotic departure is not its assumption. It provided other options from what it calls a disruptive Brexit to the economic partnership with the EU sought by May.

While a disorderly situation would leave GDP as much as 10.5 percent lower by the end of 2023 relative to remaining in the EU, the loss diminishes to less than 4 percent under an agreement that maintains close ties. Relative to forecasts made by the BOE this month, Britain would actually be better off in the best-case scenario, but that assumes achieving the closest possible ties with the EU.

What Our Economists Say:

“The numbers look very pessimistic, partly because monetary policy is assumed to respond mechanically to a surge in inflation. In reality, would the MPC be so bold as to lift rates in the face of Armageddon? We highly doubt it. Taking a step back, there’s no doubt the BOE is gambling some of its credibility on the analysis but if it helps get Prime Minister Theresa May’s deal over the line, it will be considered worthwhile.”
— Dan Hanson, Bloomberg Economics

The immediate hit to the economy from a disruptive Brexit, under which WTO tariffs and other barriers are introduced suddenly, would be about 3 percent, the BOE said. The decline in house prices would be 14 percent.

Carney reiterated that the chance of no deal was small, but it’s not impossible.

“We have always thought it was a possibility, a tail possibility, and maybe the probability has increased with time,” he said. “But even when it was just small probability, our job was to get the system ready to deal with that.”

It’s not clear the gloomy report will change much. While anti-Brexit groups will see it as reinforcing their argument, those in favor of leaving are likely to accuse Carney of reviving what they call “Project Fear.”

The BOE said the country’s top seven banks are all strong enough to continue lending even during a no-deal Brexit, with all of them clearing the latest stress tests, results of which were released separately on Wednesday.

(CNBC) ECB’s Draghi hints at a possible dip in inflation

(CNBC)

  • “If firms start to become more uncertain about the growth and inflation outlook, the squeeze on margins could prove more persistent” Draghi said at a banking conference in Frankfurt Friday.
  • “This would affect the speed with which underlying inflation picks up and therefore the inflation path that we expect to see in the quarters ahead.”
Patience and persistence in our monetary policy are still needed, says ECB’s Draghi

Patience and persistence in our monetary policy are still needed, says ECB’s Draghi  

Mario Draghi, the president of the European Central Bank (ECB), hinted at the possibility of inflation not rising as quickly as expected due to euro zone firms dealing with a slew of uncertainties.

“If firms start to become more uncertain about the growth and inflation outlook, the squeeze on margins could prove more persistent,” Draghi said at a banking conference in Frankfurt Friday.

“This would affect the speed with which underlying inflation picks up and therefore the inflation path that we expect to see in the quarters ahead.”

Draghi’s speech was generally positive about the region and he reiterated that the central bank’s massive crisis-era bond-buying scheme is still due to be wound down at the end of this year. He said there was no reason why the current expansion in the euro area — which is now in its fifth year — should abruptly come to an end, adding that the economic cycle was resilient.

German bond yields rose on Friday on the back of these comments. The country’s 10-year bond yield rose to session highs at 0.376 percent, extending earlier rises, according to Reuters.

Global uncertainties

However, the lingering doubt Draghi hinted at was how cooperates could unwind recent pay rises due to uncertainties on growth. This would then have an knock-on effect for the central bank’s own inflation forecasts which could potentially alter its future policy actions or the guidance its gives to the markets on these actions.

“The nature of this forward guidance is contingent on economic developments and therefore acts as an automatic stabilizer. If financial or liquidity conditions should tighten unduly or if the inflation outlook should deteriorate, our reaction function is well defined. This should in turn be reflected in an adjustment in the expected path of future interest rates,” Draghi stated.

The ECB is due to start raising ultra-low interest rates at the end of summer 2019 but many market watchers have doubts about the exact timing of the first hike and the bank itself has always said it well remain dependent on incoming data.

Earlier on in his speech he mentioned issues with global trade, name checking protectionism in particular. He also mentioned the temporary effects of weather, sickness and industrial action affecting output in a number of countries. More recently there was disruption for car production due to the introduction of new vehicle emissions standards, the Italian economist added. Euro zone growth has stalled slightly in recent quarters and German gross domestic product (GDP) was surprisingly weak in the third quarter.

All countries should respect the rules of the economic union, says ECB’s Draghi

All countries should respect the rules of the economic union, says ECB’s Draghi  

He added that at its last meeting in October, the ECB’s Governing Council noted that “uncertainties surrounding the medium-term outlook have increased.”

“When the latest round of projections is available at our next meeting in December, we will be better placed to make a full assessment of the risks to growth and inflation,” he said.

Carsten Brzeski, chief economist at ING Germany, said in a research note that the ECB president had opened the door for a long period of low interest rates.

“Draghi slightly changed the well-known ECB communication. While there is still a strong determination to end the net-QE (quantitative easing) purchases by the end of the year, Draghi opened the door for changes to the forward guidance in the course of 2019,” he said.

(NYT) Paul Volcker, at 91, Sees ‘a Hell of a Mess in Every Direction’

(NYT) The former Fed chairman, whose memoir will be published this month, had a feisty take on the state of politics and government during an interview.

Paul Volcker, pictured last October, said he had no intention of writing a book, but “I’m really worried about this governance thing.”CreditCreditMike Coppola/Getty Images for the National Committee on American Foreign Policy

Paul Volcker, wearing a blue sweatsuit and black dress socks, stretched out on a recliner in the den of his Upper East Side apartment on a Sunday afternoon. His lanky 6-foot-7 frame extended beyond the end of the chair’s leg rest. He added an ottoman to rest his feet.

“I’m not good,” said Mr. Volcker, 91, the former Federal Reserve chairman, who came to prominence after he used shockingly high interest rates to help end the runaway inflation of the late 1970s and early ’80s. Long one of finance’s wise men, he has been sick for several months.

But he would rather not talk about himself. Instead, Mr. Volcker wants to talk about the country, the economy and the government. And if he had seemed lethargic when I arrived, he turned lively in his laments: “We’re in a hell of a mess in every direction,” he said.

Hundreds of books surrounded Mr. Volcker — filling shelves and piled high on virtually every flat surface — as did pink pages of The Financial Times, folded into origami. “Respect for government, respect for the Supreme Court, respect for the president, it’s all gone,” he said. “Even respect for the Federal Reserve.

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“And it’s really bad. At least the military still has all the respect. But I don’t know, how can you run a democracy when nobody believes in the leadership of the country?”

Before Mr. Volcker fell ill, he finished his memoir, “Keeping at It: The Quest for Sound Money and Good Government.” The book was supposed to be published in late November, but given Mr. Volcker’s health, its publisher, PublicAffairs, a unit of Hachette, moved its release up to Oct. 30.

“I had no intention of writing a book, but there was something that kind of was irritating me,” he said. “I’m really worried about this governance thing.”

The book, which Mr. Volcker wrote with Christine Harper, editor in chief of Bloomberg Markets, is a telling memoir about a man who not only redefined the role of Fed chairman but, after the financial crisis, conceived of a namesake rule that eliminated some of the most blatant risk-taking by Wall Street banks. The Volcker Rule, which was part of the Dodd-Frank regulatory legislation, is being chipped away at by Republicans, which doesn’t sit well with him.

“There is no force on earth that can stand up effectively, year after year, against the thousands of individuals and hundreds of millions of dollars in the Washington swamp aimed at influencing the legislative and electoral process,” he wrote in the book.

Image
Mr. Volcker with President Ronald Reagan in 1981. Three years later, Mr. Volcker wrote in his book, the president would pressure him not to raise interest rates.CreditScott Applewhite/Associated Press
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The memoir is at times a dishy tale of Mr. Volcker’s years in Washington. For example, while President Trump has complained in recent months about the Fed’s plan to raise interest rates, he isn’t the first to try to influence the independent Federal Reserve. Mr. Volcker recounts being summoned to meet with President Ronald Reagan and his chief of staff, James Baker, in the president’s library next to the Oval Office in 1984.

Reagan “didn’t say a word,” Mr. Volcker wrote. “Instead Baker delivered a message: ‘The president is ordering you not to raise interest rates before the election.’” Mr. Volcker wasn’t planning to raise rates at the time.

“I was stunned,” he wrote. “I later surmised that the library location had been chosen because, unlike the Oval Office, it probably lacked a taping system.”

The book is not limited to tales of the past, however. It addresses current policy, like the 2 percent inflation target that has become the goal of the Federal Reserve.

“I puzzle at the rationale,” he wrote. “A 2 percent target, or limit, was not in my textbook years ago. I know of no theoretical justification.”

With a laugh, he told me that he believed the policy was driven by fears of deflation. “And we haven’t had any deflation in this country for 90 years!”

But there is something more worrisome affecting policy than fear, he told me. Money.

Over the din of traffic outside an open window, Mr. Volcker hoarsely sounded an alarm on the power it has to shape our culture and our politics.

“The central issue is we’re developing into a plutocracy,” he told me. “We’ve got an enormous number of enormously rich people that have convinced themselves that they’re rich because they’re smart and constructive. And they don’t like government, and they don’t like to pay taxes.”

Washington, when he arrived, “was a city filled with bureaucrats,” he said. “It didn’t make them bad.” At the time, civil servants — like his father, the township manager of Teaneck, N.J. — were respected. “I grew up in a world in which good government was a good term,” he said.

But things have changed. Today, he said, Washington is overrun by lobbyists and think tanks. Mr. Volcker, who started a nonprofit to improve education for public service, contends that our educational system has been perverted by money.

Schools like the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard and the Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs at Princeton, he said, have failed to educate a new generation of civil servants. He said they no longer taught governing but policy — a shift that he contended allowed them to hold forums and discussions with generals and under secretaries.

“Rich guys,” he said, “like to go.” He called it “hobnobbing wholesale.”

“They can argue war and peace and poverty and everything else,” he said. “But when you go to a school of public policy, you’re not learning how to run the goddamn government. You’re learning how to debate political issues.”

Unlike President Barack Obama, who invited Mr. Volcker to consult on economic and regulatory policy — and asked him if he would be willing to be Treasury secretary, he said — this White House hasn’t called him. Even so, he has met Mr. Trump twice, both times before he took office.

The first meeting was after Mr. Volcker left the Federal Reserve in 1987. “I was walking down the street, somebody calls out: ‘Hey, Paul! Hey, Paul!’ He comes running across the street and says, ‘Hi, I’m Donald Trump.’”

The other was an unsuccessful attempt by Mr. Volcker to get Mr. Trump to use “The Apprentice” to raise money for a charitable organization. “We had a very nice lunch, and he said, ‘Interesting idea,’ but put me off otherwise,” Mr. Volcker said.

Mr. Volcker is no great fan of the president, but he acknowledged that Mr. Trump had cannily recognized the economic worries of blue-collar workers. Mr. Trump “seized upon some issues that the elite had ignored,” he said. “I don’t think there’s any question about that, in kind of an erratic way, but there it is.”

He wondered how many lectures and presentations he had sat through with economists “telling us open markets are wonderful, everybody benefits from open markets.”

Eventually, Mr. Volcker said, someone in those lectures would always ask, “What about that poor manufacturer in my town?” But that concern was dismissed too easily, with talk of worker retraining or some other solution far easier said than done.

Image

Mr. Volcker with President Barack Obama in 2009. Mr. Volcker said Mr. Obama had approached him about becoming Treasury secretary.CreditDoug Mills/The New York Times

Today, Mr. Volcker is already starting to worry about the next financial crisis. Asked about the stability of the banks, he said, “They’re in a stronger position than they were, but the honest answer is I don’t know how much they’re manipulating.”

That, he said, is the real challenge facing economic policymakers. “Everybody talks about monetary policy,” he said, “but the lesson of all this is we need better, stronger supervisory powers.”

Even as our conversation came to an end, Mr. Volcker looked as if he could keep talking for hours. I told him that, rather than look sick or depressed about the state of the world, he appeared energized. Or, I told him, that was at least the impression he left.

“Leave it that way,” he said.

(CNBC) Trump directly attacks Fed Chairman Powell, saying ‘Obama had zero’ interest rates

(CNBC)

  • President Donald Trump attacked Fed Chairman Powell by name in an interview with the Wall Street Journal.
  • Trump accused Powell of endangering the U.S. economy by raising interest rates.
  • The U.S. president indicated that he sees the current performance of the economy as a competition between himself and President Barack Obama.

President Trump renews his criticism of the Fed

President Trump renews his criticism of the Fed  

President Donald Trump directly accused Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell of endangering the U.S. economy by raising interest rates, according to The Wall Street Journal.

“I’m just saying this: I’m very unhappy with the Fed because Obama had zero interest rates,” Trump told the Journal on Tuesday. “Every time we do something great, he raises the interest rates.”

The president said Powell “almost looks like he’s happy raising interest rates,” but declined to elaborate, according to the Journal.

Trump acknowledged that the Fed is traditionally independent of political influence, the Journal reported, but he still pressed his attacks and appears to view the United States’ current economic performance as a competition between himself and President Barack Obama.

Why do we have the Fed?

Why do we have the Fed?  

As the central bank of the United States, the Federal Reserve’s mission is to set interest rates with the twin goals of maximizing employment and fighting inflation. The Fed is traditionally granted independence from presidential influence so that it can fulfill that so-called “dual mandate” without political interference.

The Fed has raised interest rates three times this year as the U.S. economy has heated up, and it is widely expected to hike again before year-end.

“How the hell do you compete with that? And Obama — remember this, it’s very important — Obama had zero interest,” the president told the Journal on Tuesday.

Obama took office after the Great Recession began in December 2007. The Federal Reserve at that time put historically low interest rates in place, and took other measures besides, in an effort to inject money into the faltering economy.

Contacted by CNBC, the Federal Reserve declined to comment.

The White House did not respond to a CNBC request for comment.

Trump: ‘Maybe’ I regret nominating Powell

Asked if he regrets nominating Powell to his Fed chairmanship, Trump told the Journal: “Too early to tell, but maybe.”

Powell has said neither he nor other Fed officials are letting Trump’s frequent complaints affect them.

“My focus is essentially on controlling the uncontrollable. We control what do,” Powell said in a question-and-answer session with Judy Woodruff of PBS this month.

Also this month, Trump complained that the Fed had “gone crazy” by tightening its monetary policy. His statement prompted International Monetary Fund Managing Director Christine Lagardeand others to come forward in defense of Powell and the Federal Reserve’s decision-making.

I wouldn’t associate J Powell with craziness, Christine Lagarde says

I wouldn’t associate Jay Powell with craziness, Christine Lagarde says  

“I would not associate Jay Powell with craziness. No, no, he comes across, and members of his board, as extremely serious, solid and certainly keen to base their decisions on actual information,” Lagarde said, speaking to CNBC in Bali, Indonesia.

(EUobserver) No plans for digital euro, Draghi says

(EUobserver) European Central Bank (ECB) chief Mario Draghi has said the eurozone was not looking to create a digital currency. “The ECB and the eurosystem currently have no plans to issue a central bank digital currency,” he said in a letter to an MEP on Friday, Reuters reports. Such technologies “require substantial further development” and there was no “concrete need” for a digital euro, he added.

(JN) Banco de Portugal gasta 17.448 euros em coletes de protecção balística

(JNO Banco de Portugal celebrou um contrato para a compra de coletes de protecção balística no valor superior a 17 mil euros. O contrato publicado no portal Base é omisso quanto à finalidade desta compra.

O Banco de Portugal decidiu comprar coletes de protecção balística no valor global de 17.448 euros, mais IVA.

contrato, assinado no dia 25 de Junho com a empresa Lasi – Electrónica, Comércio de Componentes e Sistemas Eléctricos e Electrónicos, foi divulgado no portal Base dos contratos públicos esta terça-feira, 4 de Setembro.

O Negócios tentou saber as razões que levaram o banco central a fazer esta compra, mas até ao momento não tivemos resposta.

No documento publicado no portal não se consegue perceber nem a finalidade desta compra nem a quantidade de coletes que foram adquiridos. Neste último caso, a informação consta num anexo que não foi tornado público.

Uma pesquisa por alguns sites na internet permite concluir que um colete de protecção balística pode custar entre 300 e 400 euros.

Segundo o contrato, a decisão desta compra foi tomada a 18 de Junho pela directora-adjunta do Departamento de Serviços de Apoio e os equipamentos devem ser entregues num prazo de dois meses, a contar da data da assinatura.

O documento revela ainda que “todas as comunicações e notificações” feitas pela empresa no âmbito da execução do contrato “devem ser remetidas para a Unidade de Segurança, Vigilância e Suporte Operacional da Área de Segurança do Departamento de Serviços de Apoio”.

(EuroNews) China central bank warns against illegal fund-raising by virtual currency, blockchain firms

(EuroNews) China central bank warns against illegal fund-raising by virtual currency, blockchain firms

China central bank warns against illegal fund-raising by virtual currency, blockchain firms
@ Copyright :

Petar Kujundzic(Reuters)

China’s central bank issued a warning on Friday on the risks of illegal fund-raising by companies marketing virtual currencies and blockchain technology.

In a post on its website, the People’s Bank of China said those so-called “financial innovation” activities are akin to ponzi schemes, adding that people should hold a rational attitude towards blockchain rather than put blind trust in it.

(Xinhua) Markets look to ECB forum in Portugal for rates clues

(Xinhua) — A three-day European Central Bank (ECB) conference gets underway in Portugal on Monday as markets seek further clues regarding future interest rates rises.

Last week the financial markets reacted sharply to the ECB’s announcement that it would keep interest rates low until the summer of 2019, while phasing out its quantitative easing program by the end of 2018.

Bond traders sold euro paper in favor of U.S. dollar notes, European equity markets climbed and the euro fell against all the major currencies.

Some analysts viewed movements to be a slight over-reaction and so any indication from the ECB regarding future rate hikes may trigger a correction.

The ECB Forum on Central Banking, entitled “Price and wage-setting in advance economies” will be held in Sintra, a town 29 km northwest of Lisbon.

Proceedings begin with a welcome dinner for delegates Monday evening. After dinner, ECB chief Mario Draghi will offer the forum’s “Opening Remarks”.

Draghi is not expected to say anything market-moving, but his “Introductory Speech” on Tuesday morning will be watched carefully.

However, Wednesday afternoon will perhaps provide the most significant moment with a roundtable “Policy Panel” discussion featuring Draghi, Jerome Powell, the Chairman of the U.S. Federal Reserve, and Haruhiko Kuroda, Governor of the Bank of Japan.

(EFE) BCE debate em Portugal sobre preços e salários nas economias avançadas

(EFE

Dirigentes de instituições financeiras, economistas e académicos participam a partir desta segunda-feira no fórum anual que o Banco Central Europeu (BCE) realiza em Sintra (Portugal), que este ano aborda os preços e a fixação de salários nas economias avançadas.

O presidente do BCE, Mario Draghi, vai abrir o fórum no fim da tarde em Sintra, antes da recepção e o jantar de gala.

Na cerimónia inaugural também está previsto um discurso do ex-secretário do Tesouro americano Lawrence Summers sobre a política monetária num contexto de baixa inflação e baixos juros.

Draghi vai voltar a discursar na terça-feira com um discurso introdutório antes da primeira sessão, dedicada aos aspectos macroeconómicos dos preços e a fixação de salários e presidida pelo membro do comité executivo do BCE Peter Praet.

Esta sessão irá contar com uma conferência sobre desaceleração e inflação sensível aos ciclos de James H. Stock, da Universidade de Harvard, e outra sobre as expectativas em torno da inflação de Yuriy Gorodnichenko, da Universidade da Califórnia.

A primeira sessão vai acabar com um painel no qual participam o presidente da Reserva Federal de St. Louis, Jim Bullard; o governador do Banco Central da Irlanda, Philip Lane; a professora do Massachussets Institute of Tecnology (MIT) Kristin Forbes, e o economista francês Charles Wyplosz.

O fórum irá continuar na quarta-feira com uma sessão centrada no preço e a fixação de salários do ponto de vista microeconómico, presidida por outro membro do comité executivo do BCE, Sabine Lautenschläger.

A sessão começa com as conferências do professor Aviv Nevo, da Universidade da Pensilvânia, sobre medir a inflação nas economias modernas; e de Uta Schönberg, da University College London, sobre crescimento da produtividade e os salários.

O economista da Comissão Europeia Tommaso Valletti; o chefe de mercados trabalhistas inclusivos da Organização Internacional do Trabalho, Philippe Marcadent; o presidente da Organização Global do Trabalho, Klaus Zimmermann, e a professora Erica Groshen, da Universidade de Cornell, vão fechar a sessão com um debate.

A reunião finaliza na quarta-feira pela tarde com um painel que vai juntar Draghi com o presidente da Reserva Federal (Fed), Jerome Powell; o governador do Banco do Japão, Haruhiko Kuroda; e o do Banco da Reserva Australiana, Philip Lowe.

A cidade de Sintra recebe há cinco anos este fórum do BCE, que replica um modelo que a Fed realiza desde 1978 na cidade de Jackson Hole, no Kansas.

(ECO) BCE termina estímulos no final do ano. Reduz compras para metade a partir de setembro

(ECOBCE anunciou hoje que vai reduzir as compras de dívida pública na Zona Euro para 15 mil milhões de euros por mês a partir de setembro, se inflação estiver robusta. Estímulos terminam no final do ano.

Banco Central Europeu (BCE) vai reduzir as compras de dívida pública na Zona Euro de 30 mil milhões de euros para 15 mil milhões de euros por mês a partir de setembro, isto se a taxa de inflação estiver em linha com o seu objetivo. Depois disso, o programa de estímulos monetários terminará no final do ano. Já os juros vão continuar em mínimos históricos até ao verão do próximo ano.

As decisões foram conhecidas esta quinta-feira, após nova reunião de política monetária do banco central liderado por Mario Draghi, que teve lugar em Riga, Letónia.

Está em marcha a normalização da política monetária na Zona Euro, depois do programa agressivo de compras de dívida ter adquirido mais de dois biliões de euros em obrigações desde março de 2015. No fundo, o BCE vai deixar de comprar dívida já no início do próximo ano e, a partir daí, apenas os reinvestimentos (com dinheiro dos títulos que foram vencendo) vão ajudar a conter os juros na região, um cenário que já era esperado pelos analistas. .

Adicionalmente, apesar de ter mantido os juros nesta reunião, o BCE deixou uma nova orientação quanto ao rumo das taxas na região nos próximos tempos. E os juros em mínimos vão continuar durante mais um ano, antecipa o banco central.

“O Conselho de Governadores espera que as taxas diretoras do BCE continuem nos seus atuais níveis até, pelo menos, ao verão de 2019 e, em qualquer caso, durante o tempo que for necessário para assegurar que a evolução da inflação permaneça alinhada com as expectativas atuais de um ajustamento sustentado da trajetória”, afirma a autoridade em comunicado.

Atualmente, a taxa de juro de referência, que determina o custo do crédito na economia da Zona Euro, está nos 0,0%. Já as taxas de juro dos depósitos no banco central permaneceram nos -0,4%.

Daqui a pouco, quando foram 13h30 em Lisboa, Mario Draghi vai comparecer perante os jornalistas para explicar as decisões tomadas esta quinta-feira. E são vários os pontos de interesse para acompanhar. O italiano vai apresentar novas projeções para a evolução da economia do bloco do euro. Além disso, a instabilidade política em Itália também deverá merecer a atenção da imprensa. Mas o tema central deverá ser mesmo o programa de compras de dívida pública.

(Reuters) ECB to debate ending bond buys next week: Praet

(Reuters)The European Central Bank will debate next week whether to end bond purchases later this year, the bank’s chief economist said on Wednesday, a hawkish message seen preparing investors for another cut in stimulus.

Having revived growth with an unprecedented 2.55 trillion euro ($3 trillion) bond-buying scheme, ECB policymakers must decide when to end the purchases as the threat of deflation is long gone and the bloc is on its best growth run in a decade.

While policymakers are in broad agreement that the purchases should end this year, ECB President Mario Draghi has avoided any formal discussion about winding down the program, looking for more evidence that inflation is on a sustained rebound.

But comments from Peter Praet, a close Draghi ally, suggest that the ECB is pleased with the rise in inflation, raising the risk that a decision may come sooner rather than later.

“Next week, the Governing Council will have to assess whether progress so far has been sufficient to warrant a gradual unwinding of our net purchases,” he said in his last remarks before the ECB’s next policy meeting, noting that it will be a “judgment” call.

Euro zone bond yield rose and the euro hit a 10-day high against the dollar on comments from Praet, seen as one of the most dovish members of the Governing Council.

Some analysts took the comment to suggest a decision is coming at the June 14 meeting but others saw it as the starting gun in a debate that will likely culminate in a decision in July.

“We still don’t think that the ECB will easily give away flexibility and room for maneuver on QE in a situation in which downside risks to the economic outlook have increased and political risks could easily re-emerge,” ING economist Carsten Brzeski said.

JUNE OR JULY?

Major policy changes have been taken in two steps in recent years with Draghi announcing preparations for a change in one meeting, then following through six weeks later.

The bank is also meeting in Riga, Latvia, making a major decision unlikely. External meetings away from the ECB’s Frankfurt headquarters, held just once a year, involve protocol functions with local officials, leaving less time for substantial work.

But Praet’s comments were a clear signal that when a decision is made, it is likely to be about gradually winding down the program as progress has been made in the ECB’s three inflation criteria.

“Signals showing the convergence of inflation toward our aim have been improving, and both the underlying strength in the euro area economy and the fact that such strength is increasingly affecting wage formation supports our confidence that inflation will reach a level of below, but close to, 2 percent over the medium term,” Praet said in Berlin.

“Waning market expectations of sizeable further expansions of our program have been accompanied by inflation expectations that are increasingly consistent with our aim,” Praet.

Inflation surged to 1.9 percent last month to hit the ECB’s target but most of the rise was due to higher energy prices. While the ECB tends to look past oil price shocks, it targets headline inflation suggesting that rising prices, even if fueled by those higher energy costs, support the case for curbing stimulus.

Several Governing Council members including two board members have recently argued for an end to the bond buys this year and Bundesbank President Jens Weidmann, among the most conservative rate setters, renewed his call on Wednesday to end the purchases.

The buys, now reduced to 30 billion euros a month, are due to run until the end of September but policymakers have long argued that they should be wound down gradually, over the course of several months.

+++ (JN) Bancos terão de ceder dados às fintech “a bem ou a mal”, diz BdP

(JNO Banco de Portugal tranquiliza as fintech, depois da Autoridade da Concorrência ter acusado uma “transposição lenta” da nova directiva e as barreiras à entrada ditadas por este atraso.

A nova directiva de pagamentos, a PSD 2, define que os clientes podem autorizar entidades terceiras a efectuar pagamentos, e portanto os bancos têm de ceder os dados dos clientes às fintech. A directora adjunta do Departamento de Sistemas de Pagamentos do Banco de Portugal, Maria Tereza Cavaco avisa: “Os bancos, se não derem a bem, vão ter de dar a mal. Porque se não derem a bem e não cumprirem os requisitos vão ter de simplesmente permitir o acesso ao seu homebanking”.

A SIBS está actualmente a construir uma plataforma (API) para facilitar a troca de informações entre os bancos e as fintech, mediante a autorização do cliente. Os bancos podem optar por esta via ou por criar as próprias soluções, mas a acção é obrigatória e sujeita a condições apertadas, nomeadamente no que toca ao tempo de resposta. “Aquilo que o regulador vai fazer depois é verificar se a API que a SIBS disponibiliza, ou outras soluções individualizadas, cumprem ou não todos os requisitos. Nós vamos monitorizar quando for a altura”, garante Maria Tereza Cavaco.

Estas declarações surgiram no âmbito da APED Retail Summit, uma conferência que juntou representantes do Banco de Portugal, a Autoridade da Concorrência, SIBS e Visa com os de duas fintech, Easypay e Aptoide.

A Autoridade da Concorrência já se tinha pronunciado quanto aos atrasos da transposição da directiva, alertando para as barreiras à entrada das fintech que este atraso impõe. A transposição estava marcada para 13 de Janeiro mas, quatro meses depois, continua por concluir. Para além disto, “a transposição não resolve todos os problemas. Há depois a implementação, e existirão com certeza desafios”, afirmou na mesma conferência Ana Sofia Rodrigues, a directora do Departamento de Estudos e Acompanhamento de Mercados da Autoridade da Concorrência.

O CEO da EasyPay, Sebastião de Lancastre, vocalizou as preocupações relativamente a este atraso. “Causa problemas às empresas que querem inovar”, queixa-se, e reage:”Os bancos vêem isto como ameaça. Vamos ver quem tem mais músculo”. Sebastião de Lancastre deu o exemplo da própria empresa, que, apesar de portuguesa, tem sede na Suíça. “Em Portugal não seria fácil” sedear-se devido às falhas de regulação, justifica. “Na Suíça temos uma relação muito próxima com o regulador”, que aproveita o feedback das empresas para moldar a regulação, assegura o CEO.

(Reuters) Bank of Portugal chief sees room for more bond-buying

(Reuters) The Bank of Portugal will keep buying the country’s sovereign debt, since the country is below its capital key limit for such purchases within the diminishing European Central bank bond-buying programme, Governor Carlos Costa said on Wednesday.

“What’s going to happen with the already announced reinvestment policy is, as we are below our capital key, we can manage supranational purchases versus sovereign, including by increasing the share of sovereign” debt purchases, Costa told a parliament committee, without specifying how much it could buy.

The ECB’s capital key weighting is based on the size of each country’s economy. It dictates limits on the amount of each country’s debt and individual bonds the euro system central banks can hold.

Due to a shortage of eligible Portuguese debt, the Bank of Portugal has been complementing its monthly purchases with supranational debt, issued by the European Stability Fund and its predecessors such as the European Financial Stability Facility.

“The Bank of Portugal will remain in the market and will optimize (its activities) in full accordance with the euro system rules,” Costa said, explaining that Portugal’s loan repayments to the International Monetary Fund in 2016-17 and some new bond issues have created more eligible national debt.

Cristina Casalinho, the head of state debt agency IGCP, said last week Portugal was still benefiting from monthly bond purchases by the European Central Bank of 400 million to 500 million euros as before it started gradually reducing overall purchases across the euro zone from 80 billion euros.

She said the country was likely to feel some implications when the total amount is reduced to 20 billion euros from 30 billion and later when the purchases peter out by the end of the year, but the impact should be smaller than in other economies.

Costa said, however, that the pace of buying did reduce over last year, when the bank had to buy more supranational debt. He would not say how much the ECB was buying now per month.

+++ O.P. (EXP) Ricardo Salgado e Morais Pires conhecem decisão de impugnação de coimas aplicadas pelo Banco de Portugal

O.P. 

Eu sei que esta opinião pessoal vai ser polémica.

Mas sei que é meu dever a publicitar.

Se há uma entidade em Portugal, mas que nem depende de Portugal, em que se não deve confiar, é o Banco de Portugal.

Basta ler as minhas Opiniões Pessoais e ver o que aconteceu nos últimos anos.

Embora não tenha a mais pequena simpatia nem compreensão pela ex administração do Banco Espírito Santo, tenho repulsa e indignação por qualquer condenação por parte do Banco de Portugal, que sempre soube de tudo, e que na realidade, se tal possível legalmente fosse,(mas não é, devido às imunidades decorrentes dos acordos da UE), devia era estar sentado no banco dos réus.

Basta aliás atentar ao comportamento do Banco de Portugal face à Comissão de Mercado de Valores Mobiliários no caso do Banco Espírito Santo (entre outros), para se perceber o que eu estou a dizer.

E para que não existam quaisquer dúvidas assino reproduzindo parte do Sub Menu About que consta deste site há anos:

“Francisco (Abouaf) de Curiel Marques Pereira 

Vice Chairman and CEO of the “Portuguese Association of Investment Companies – APC”, a Legal Entity, Member of The Advisory Board of the CMVM (FSA equivalent), Member of The Portuguese Government Advisory Council on Capital Markets “Conselho Nacional do Mercado de Valores Mobiliarios”, Presided by the Minister of Finance, and in consequence Advisor to The Government of The Portuguese Republic.”

(ExpressoO Tribunal de Supervisão, em Santarém, tem agendado para esta segunda-feira a leitura da sentença sobre as coimas aplicadas a Salgado e Morais Pires pelo BdP. Em causa está a comercialização de dívida da Espírito Santo Internacional junto de clientes.

O ex-presidente do BES, Ricardo Salgado, e o antigo administrador Amílcar Morais Pires conhecem esta segunda-feira a sentença do Tribunal da Supervisão ao pedido de impugnação das coimas de 4 milhões e de 600 mil euros, respetivamente, aplicadas em 2016 pelo Banco de Portugal.

Em causa no processo, que tem a leitura da sentença marcada para esta segunda-feira, estão as contraordenações aplicadas pelo Banco de Portugal (BdP), em agosto de 2016, nomeadamente por comercialização de títulos de dívida da Espírito Santo Internacional junto de clientes do Banco Espírito Santo (BES).

Coima de 3,5 milhões euros para Salgado e de 300 mil para Morais Pires

Nas alegações finais, proferidas em dezembro, o Ministério Público pediu a redução das coimas aplicadas a Ricardo Salgado, de 4 para 3,5 milhões de euros, e ao ex-administrador Amílcar Morais Pires, de 600 mil euros para 300 mil euros, por entender não ter ficado provado que este atuou com dolo, mas sim de forma negligente, e considerar alguns atenuantes em relação ao antigo presidente do BES.

Para a procuradora Edite Palma, Amílcar Morais Pires deve ser condenado ao pagamento de uma coima de 300 mil euros, suspensa em dois terços, e deve ser revogada a sanção acessória de inibição do exercício de cargos dirigentes no setor financeiro e bancário durante três anos, mantendo a obrigação de publicitar a eventual condenação.

No caso de Ricardo Salgado, a redução de 4 para 3,5 milhões de euros foi acompanhada do pedido de uma suspensão em um terço, mantendo-se a sanção acessória de inibição do exercício de cargos no setor durante 10 anos e de publicitação.

O mandatário do Banco de Portugal João Raposo não acompanhou o pedido de Edite Palma, reafirmando que a decisão sancionatória do supervisor “é justa”.

Já as defesas dos arguidos apontaram os valores das coimas aplicadas pelo BdP, que consideraram não ter comparação com qualquer moldura de processos crime.

Defesa de Salgado e Morais Pires invocam vícios processuais

O facto de a procuradora ter proposto ao Tribunal a “reorganização dos factos” constantes da acusação levou Raul Soares da Veiga, advogado de defesa de Amílcar Morais Pires, e os mandatários de Salgado a reafirmarem a existência de vícios processuais que, no seu entender, deverão levar a juíza Anabela Campos a declarar nula a decisão do BdP.

Alegaram ainda que os administradores que “tinham conhecimento de toda a dívida” ou foram absolvidos ou foram alvo de contraordenações mínimas, como foi o caso de José Maria Ricciardi (60 mil euros, suspensa em três quartos por cinco anos), que optou por pagar e desistiu do recurso.

O julgamento que se iniciou em 06 de março de 2017 no Tribunal da Concorrência, Regulação e Supervisão (TCRS), em Santarém, apreciou os pedidos de impugnação apresentados por Ricardo Salgado e Amílcar Pires no âmbito de um processo que começou por ter 18 arguidos (15 singulares e três coletivos), 13 dos quais alvo de coimas.

Ricardo Salgado foi condenado ao pagamento de 4 milhões de euros e ficou impedido de exercer cargos no setor por 10 anos como resultado da aplicação de cinco coimas por não implementação de sistemas de informação e comunicação adequados, por não implementação de um sistema de gestão de riscos sólido, eficaz e consistente, no que concerne à atividade de colocação de produtos emitidos por terceiros, por atos dolosos de gestão ruinosa, praticados em detrimento dos depositantes, investidores e demais credores, por prestação de falsas informações ao BdP, por violação das regras sobre conflitos de interesses.

A defesa de Ricardo Salgado – conduzida por Francisco Proença de Carvalho e Adriano Squilacce – retomou, nas alegações finais, muita da argumentação já constante do recurso, pondo em causa a atuação do BdP, que, no seu entender, “transformou arguidos em testemunhas”, numa forma de “delação premiada”, sem regras e “utilizada para responsabilizar” quem o supervisor “já tinha condenado”, em particular o governador Carlos Costa, que “três dias depois da abertura do processo já tinha decidido”.

Os advogados invocaram ainda o pedido da procuradora do Ministério Público, Edite Palma, para que o tribunal desconsidere o testemunho de José Castella (cujas declarações no TCRS foram extraídas para averiguação da atuação dos instrutores do processo que o inquiriram na fase administrativa), a que acrescentaram o pedido de igual tratamento para o depoimento de Francisco Machado da Cruz, a que chamaram a “testemunha rainha” do BdP.

Amílcar Morais Pires foi alvo de duas contraordenações por não implementação de sistemas de informação e comunicação adequados e não implementação de um sistema de gestão de riscos sólido, eficaz e consistente, no que concerne à atividade de colocação de produtos emitidos por terceiros.

(BBG) Portugal Wants Next ECB Head to Stick With Draghi’s Approach

(BBG) Portuguese Prime Minister Antonio Costa wants the European Central Bank to continue with Mario Draghi’s robust approach to policy after the ECB president steps down next year.

“We’d like someone who could continue the very good role played by Mr. Draghi, who was greatly responsible for saving the euro,” Costa said in an interview in London. “The nationality of the future president of the ECB is not the question. The question is what is the policy of the ECB? What is important is the continuity and the stability of Mr. Draghi’s approach in the future.”

Draghi’s eight-year term, which ends in October 2019, has so far been dominated by unprecedented monetary measures aimed at averting the breakup of the bloc and staving off deflation. Many of those steps have been criticized by Bundesbank President Jens Weidmann, who is currently viewed as the front-runner in the succession battle.

Portugal has been a beneficiary of the ECB’s stance, seeing borrowing costs tumble and unemployment drop to below the euro-area average. The nation’s economy expanded 2.7 percent last year, the fastest growth in almost two decades.

The next ECB head will be chosen by European governments in multiple rounds of horse-trading that will include the replacement of most of the Executive Board, the head of the Single Supervisory Mechanism and political positions such as the European Commission presidency.

+++ V.I. (BBG) Draghi Stares at Trade War Abyss as ECB Ponders Stimulus Outlook

(Bloomberg) — Mario Draghi’s progress toward a stimulus
exit is likely to stay slow for now, with inflation too low for
comfort and the global economy up against a trade-war-in-
waiting.
U.S. tariffs and retaliation by Europe and others could
harm the outlook for the euro area, where exports have played a
huge role towing the economy out of its slump. That could add to
the European Central Bank president’s argument when he pushes
back against some ECB officials lobbying for a change to policy
guidance.
If, contrary to expectations, more optimistic Governing
Council members do win some concessions at Thursday’s policy
meeting in Frankfurt, any language tweaks are expected to be
minor. The need for patience and persistence will also be
reflected in new growth and inflation forecasts, where any
revisions will also likely to be minimal.
So far, inflation has been a road block to scaling back
support. At only 1.2 percent in February, the rate remains far
from the ECB’s goal of just below 2 percent. Going forward,
consumer-price growth is set to pick-up gradually.
Draghi has expressed confidence that the economy’s
continued strength will eventually fuel price pressures.
Expansion last year was the strongest in a decade, with exports
rising the most in almost three years in the fourth quarter.
*T
What Our Economists Say…“There’s not a whole lot more that
monetary policy can do to jump-start inflation apart from
intentionally overheating the economy — a step that few central
bankers would argue is a good idea.”– David Powell and Jamie
Murray, Bloomberg EconomicsFor more, see our EURO-AREA PREVIEW:
Draghi to Fend Off Calls for Major ECB Shift
*T
Policy makers already identified increased trade
protectionism — as well as exchange-rate fluctuations — as
downside risks in January. Since then, gauges of market-expected
future volatility have eased.
At the same time, government-bond yields and the euro have
risen on the back of the region’s optimistic outlook. Growth in
the coming years is forecast to exceed the rate the economy can
sustain long-term, reducing economic slack.
Political uncertainty triggered by a strong showing of
anti-establishment parties in Italian elections has the
potential to damp prospects. Confidence measures have already
started to retreat from multi-year highs.
For Draghi, who has pledged to buy 30 billion euros ($37
billion) of assets until at least September and keep interest
rates unchanged until well past the end of purchases, that may
just be another reason to stay the course on stimulus for now.