The world this week -- Business
Joe Biden nominated Jerome Powell for a second term as chairman of the Federal Reserve.
Left-wing Democrats had sought to boot Mr Powell out of the job; Elizabeth Warren, a fiery senator, had described him as “a dangerous man” because of his past support for financial deregulation.
Their preferred candidate for the top job at the central bank, Lael Brainard, was promoted to vice-chairwoman.
That could produce some differences of opinion on bank regulation and Fed policies focused on climate change; Ms Brainard wants more of both.
America’s prices were 5% higher in October than they were a year earlier, according to the personal consumption expenditures index, which the Fed uses to measure inflation.
Excluding food and energy, prices rose by 4.1%, still more than double the Fed’s long-run inflation target of 2%.
Both measures were higher than they were in September; neither has been so high at any point in the past three decades.
New Zealand’s central bank raised its benchmark interest rate by a quarter of a percentage point, to 0.75%.
It was the second increase in as many months, with predictions of more to come amid a buoyant economy and rocketing housing market.
Under pressure over soaring petrol prices, the White House announced that it would intervene in oil markets by releasing 50m barrels from America’s strategic oil reserve in the hope that the additional supply will cause prices to drop.
In a co-ordinated effort, Britain, India, Japan and South Korea are also releasing oil and China “may do more as well”.
Some questioned whether America’s extra 50m barrels, equivalent to less than three days of American oil consumption, were enough.
KKR, a private-equity firm, made a bid worth 33bn euroes ($37bn) for Telecom Italia, in what could be Europe’s biggest-ever buy-out.
Italy’s legacy telecoms firm is crippled by debt, hampering efforts to expand broadband in the country.
If the board agrees to a takeover, the government will then decide whether it is in the national interest and should be allowed to go ahead.
The Turkish lira plunged again against the dollar, euro and other currencies, before recovering somewhat.
The latest run on the currency is the worst in decades, taking its loss for the year so far to 40%.
The rout intensified when Recep Tayyip Erdogan, Turkey’s president, defended interest-rate cuts despite the fact that inflation is running near 20%.
Mr Erdogan has piled pressure on the nominally independent central bank to cut rates—it has taken four percentage points off its main rate since September—even though monetary policy is tightening around the world.