The world this week -- Business
The Federal Reserve raised its benchmark interest rate by a quarter of a percentage point, lifting it to a target range of 0.25-0.50%, the first increase since 2018.
America’s central bank also said that it expects to lift the rate at its six remaining meetings in 2022 with more to come next year, eventually bringing it to 2.8%.
Despite the financial volatility caused by the war in Ukraine, the Fed felt it had to act to tame surging inflation; the conflict will only add to price pressures.
Sarah Bloom Raskin withdrew her nomination as Joe Biden’s choice to head financial regulation at the Fed.
Ms. Raskin, a former deputy secretary at the Treasury, came under attack from Republicans for her tough approach to financial risk posed by climate change.
She withdrew after Joe Manchin, a Democratic senator from coal-loving West Virginia, said he would not vote for her.
Oil prices retreated rapidly from their recent highs.
Brent crude fell below $100 a barrel, less than a week after it had hurtled towards $140.
The International Energy Agency warned of a “global oil-supply shock” caused by the effect of sanctions on Russian production, observing that new trades on Russian oil have “all but dried up”.
Only Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates have the capacity to make up the shortfall, it said.
EDF raised its forecast of the cost it will bear from the French government’s cap on household energy increases, to ?10.2bn ($11.2bn).
The French utility also upped the estimate of the further hit it will take from reduced output at its nuclear power plants because of technical issues, to ?16bn.
The G7 said it was working collectively to stop Russia obtaining financing from the IMF, World Bank and European Bank for Reconstruction and Development and that Russia would no longer be treated as a normal trading partner.
The Russian government moved to designate Meta as an “extremist organisation”, after reports that the parent company of Facebook and Instagram would allow Ukrainians to call for violence against Russian soldiers on its sites.
Meta said there was no change to its policies on hate speech “as far as the Russian people are concerned”.
The row does raise questions about Meta’s role in selecting just when it thinks support for violence is suitable across its platforms.