U.S. Economic News

June 21, 2017

U.S. Economic Indicators

Existing home sales rose 1.1% to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 5.62 million in May, and are 2.7% above year-ago levels.  The rebound of sales in May after a weakening in April was driven by a strong labor market and moderating mortgage rates, according to NAR.  NAR Report

U.S. News

Charles Evans, President of the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago, says the Fed can wait until the end of the year to decide whether to raise interest rates again but may start shrinking its balance sheet sooner.  Evans believes that the Fed should wait to see if weaker inflation is transitory or here to stay. WSJ

Martin Wolf of the Financial Times argues that the Federal Reserve is ahead of other central banks in normalizing monetary policy and that the Fed should keep its 2% inflation target. Wolf asserts that the central bank should refrain from further rate hikes for the time being to allow inflation to rise above 2% for a sustained period, allowing Fed officials to prove that their 2% goal is not an upper limit, but a “symmetrical target.” FT