Trump budget chief sees Fed continuing accommodative rate policy


Asian markets were also waiting to see if China's central bank would follow the Fed with another round of money market rate increases, as it did in March.

Fed officials now expect the US unemployment rate to end the year at 4.3 percent, down from the 4.5 percent they predicted in March.

Stocks were also weighed down as Brent crude remained under 47 USA dollars a barrel, down another 0.1% at 46.84 U.S. dollars and languishing at the lowest level for almost a year.

Wall Street's top banks brought forward their expectations for when they think the Federal Reserve will begin reducing its $4.5 trillion bond portfolio to as early September, and see balance sheet reduction as more of a priority than another interest rate rise, a Reuters poll showed.

Federation Internationale de Football Association chief praises Russia's preparations for 2018 World Cup
Putin also stressed Russia's "responsibility and decisiveness to hold the Confederations Cup at the top level". Striker Smolov and midfielder Glushakov fired a goal each to take their team to a comfortable victory.

CURRENCIES: The dollar rose to 109.75 from 109.57 yen.

The US Federal Reserve increased its key interest rate by 0.25% to a 1.00%-1.25% range on Wednesday, maintaining its view that three total rate hikes in 2017 will be appropriate.

Experts said that the State Bank of Việt Nam's policies on exchange rates helped the market avoid external shocks, adding that the Fed rate hikes would not have significant impacts on VNĐ/USD exchange rates.

US stocks rose after the Fed announcement, while the dollar reversed some of its earlier losses. This would reduce its holdings of Treasury and mortgage-backed bonds, which they acquired in the wake of the financial crisis to support economic growth.

Canaccord Genuity Reaffirms Hold Rating for Barratt Developments Plc (BDEV)
Finally, Citigroup Inc. reissued a buy rating on shares of Pets at Home Group PLC in a research report on Friday, March 31st. The stock of Liontrust Asset Management PLC (LON: LIO ) has "Add" rating given on Tuesday, August 4 by Numis Securities.

Now the Fed said the inflation will be below its 2 percent target. The S&P ASX 200 in Australia tumbled 1.2 percent to 5,763.20. Inflation was expected to be at 1.7% by the end of this year, down from the 1.9% previously forecast. A local expert says the USA rate hike could actually help Korea resolve its massive household debt problem, which topped a staggering 1.2-trillion US dollars in the first quarter. The decision which was taken on Wednesday was in the 8-1 vote. They fell as low as 2.103 percent following the downbeat data, their lowest since November 10.

Sterling weakened 0.3 percent to $1.2717 before a Bank of England policy decision expected to leave interest rates at record lows.

ASIA'S DAY: Japan's Nikkei 225 stock index fell 0.3 percent to 19,831.82 and South Korea's Kospi sank 0.5 percent to 2,361.65.

However, Yellen said business and household confidence remain quite strong, and echoed the statement from the Fed's policysetting Federal Open Market Committee, which repeated its confidence that the United States economy would continue to expand "at a moderate pace" even with further gradual rate increases.

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But public anger has been swelling, with furious residents heckling May and storming the local authority headquarters on Friday. Dozens of people remain missing after the fire engulfed the 24-story building early Wednesday, CNN reported .

The Federal Reserve was able to modestly raise rates because of the United States economy's relatively strong performance, in comparison with the U.S. or Europe.