President Donald Trump praised the Federal Reserve for cutting the federal funds rate to a range of 0 percent to 0.25 percent, and restarting quantitative easing with $500 billion of U.S. treasuries purchases and $200 billion of mortgage purchases in response to the Chinese coronavirus global pandemic.
“It makes me very happy and I want to congratulate the Federal Reserve,” he said. “That’s a big step and I’m very happy they did it.” Trump has been hounding the Fed for years to cut interest rates to make the dollar more competitive against trading partners’ currencies including the yuan, euro and peso. Now he gets his wish.
The Federal Reserve slashed interest rates to near zero on Sunday as part of a series of measures intended to combat the economic downturn caused by the coronavirus pandemic.
The central bank cut rates to 0% to 0.25%, the central bank announced in a statement. The Fed will also purchase $700 billion worth of Treasury and mortgage-backed securities through quantitative easing, a measure previously used during the Great Recession to get money flowing back into the markets, The Washington Post reported.
The Federal Reserve on Wednesday raised a key interest rate for the third time this year in response to a strong U.S. economy and signaled that it expected to maintain a pace of gradual rate hikes. The Fed lifted its short-term rate — a benchmark for many consumer and business…