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The Latest: Fed sees no risk to dollar from cryptocurrencies

The Latest: Fed sees no risk to dollar from cryptocurrencies Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell is downplaying the possibility that digital currencies such as Facebook's planned "Libra" could supplant government-backed dollars any time soon. The Fed chair says that Facebook had met with regulators and government supervisors to offer a digital currency, including with officials from the U.S. central bank. Powell says the currencies offer both potential benefits and possible risks.


New York allowed driver's licenses for undocumented immigrants. Is New Jersey next?

New York allowed driver's licenses for undocumented immigrants. Is New Jersey next? After New York became the 13th state to offer driver’s licenses to undocumented immigrants, advocates are pushing for New Jersey to be next.


Fed stands pat on rates, signals it's prepared to cut if trade war intensifies

Fed stands pat on rates, signals it's prepared to cut if trade war intensifies The Fed kept its key interest rate at 2.25% to 2.5% but signaled it was prepared to cut rates if the US trade war with China deepens


Glaciers, goodbye? Himalayan ice melt has doubled in recent years, old spy images confirm

Glaciers, goodbye? Himalayan ice melt has doubled in recent years, old spy images confirm Picture 3 million swimming pools full of water. That's how much ice melts from glaciers in the Himalayas each year, and climate change is the primary cause.


This Just In: U.S. Steel Upgraded

This Just In: U.S. Steel Upgraded Vertical Group thinks U.S. Steel stock could heat up on a big production cut.


What Dave & Buster's Wants Investors to Know

What Dave & Buster's Wants Investors to Know The entertainment chain recently lowered its sales growth outlook for 2019.


Fed Scraps ‘Patient’ Rate Approach in Prelude to Potential Cut

Fed Scraps ‘Patient’ Rate Approach in Prelude to Potential Cut (Bloomberg) -- The Federal Reserve indicated a readiness to cut interest rates for the first time in more than a decade to sustain a near-record U.S. economic expansion, citing “uncertainties” in their outlook.While Chairman Jerome Powell and fellow policy makers left their key rate in a range of 2.25% to 2.5% on Wednesday, they dropped a reference in their statement to being “patient” on borrowing costs and forecast a larger miss of their 2% inflation target this year.Read More: Bloomberg’s TOPLive blog on the FOMC decisionU.S. stocks rose after the decision and Treasuries erased losses. Yields on 2-year Treasury yields dropped over 5 basis points to 1.81%, while benchmark 10-year rates broke below 2.05%. Fed funds futures priced in increased odds of a rate cut at the July meeting.The change in tone follows attacks on the Fed by President Donald Trump for not doing more to bolster the economy and Tuesday’s report by Bloomberg News that the president asked White House lawyers earlier this year to explore his options for demoting Powell from the chairmanship.In a press conference after the meeting, Powell said he thinks "the law is clear that I have a four-year term and I fully intend to serve it."The Fed still expects a strong labor market and inflation to be near its goal but “uncertainties about this outlook have increased,’’ the Federal Open Market Committee said in the statement following a two-day meeting in Washington. “In light of these uncertainties and muted inflation pressures, the Committee will closely monitor the implications of incoming information for the economic outlook and will act as appropriate to sustain the expansion.”The FOMC vote was not unanimous, with St. Louis Fed President James Bullard seeking a quarter-point rate cut. His vote marked the first dissent of Powell’s 16-month tenure as chairman.Policy makers were starkly divided on the path for policy. Eight of 17 penciled in a reduction by the end of the year as another eight saw no change and one forecast a hike, according to updated quarterly forecasts.In the statement, officials downgraded their assessment of economic activity to a “moderate” pace from “solid” at their last gathering.The pivot toward easier monetary policy shows the Fed swinging closer to the view of most investors that Trump’s trade war is slowing the economy’s momentum and that rates are too restrictive given sluggish inflation.Trump’s attacks on the Fed risk casting a political shadow over whatever policy decision the Fed makes, though Powell and his colleagues say they’re focusing only on the economic goals Congress gave them.Officials noted that “growth of household spending appears to have picked up from earlier in the year” and that indicators of business fixed investment “have been soft.” They repeated that the labor market “remains strong.”Investors have been betting the Fed will reduce rates at its next meeting in late July, though a majority of economists surveyed earlier this month don’t expect a move until December. Yields on 10-year Treasuries have fallen to the lowest since 2017. The hope of fresh stimulus has sent U.S. stocks to near a record.Recent U.S. economic data have been mixed. Consumer spending held up in May but job gains were disappointing, and some gauges of business sentiment have cooled on uncertainty around the outlook for trade. The Fed remains bedevilled by inflation continuing to undershoot the central bank’s 2% target despite unemployment being at a 49-year low.Central bankers are likely hoping for greater clarity over Trump’s trade war with China. Stocks jumped on Tuesday after the president said he would meet Chinese leader Xi Jinping at next week’s Group of 20 summit in Japan.The Fed, which raised interest rates four times last year and as recently as December projected further hikes in 2019, isn’t alone in changing tack. European Central Bank President Mario Draghi on Tuesday paved the way for a rate cut, and central banks in Australia, India and Russia have lowered borrowing costs this month.Get MoreThe median projection for 2019 GDP growth was unchanged at 2.1% and revised up by a tenth of a point to 2% in 2020. The 2021 estimate was held at 1.8%.The median unemployment rate forecasts 2019-21 were all lowered by a tenth of a point. Officials see 3.6% this year rising to 3.7% next year and 3.8% in 2021. Officials see the jobless rate most consistent with full employment in the long run at 4.2%, versus 4.3% in March.Officials cut estimates for their preferred inflation gauge. The personal consumption expenditures price index is expected to increase just 1.5% in 2019, down from a 1.8% projection in March. By 2020, the main and core gauges are both projected to rise 1.9%, below the target.(Updates with Powell quote on serving his term in fifth paragraph.)\--With assistance from Chris Middleton, Alex Tanzi and Ben Holland.To contact the reporter on this story: Craig Torres in Washington at ctorres3@bloomberg.netTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Alister Bull at abull7@bloomberg.net, ;Margaret Collins at mcollins45@bloomberg.net, Scott Lanman, Jeff KearnsFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.


Fed leaves its key rate unchanged but hints of future cuts

Fed leaves its key rate unchanged but hints of future cuts The Federal Reserve left its key interest rate unchanged Wednesday but signaled that it's prepared to start cutting rates if needed to protect the U.S. economy from trade conflicts and other threats. The Fed kept its benchmark rate — which influences many consumer and business loans — in a range of 2.25% to 2.5%, where it's been since December. It issued a statement saying that because "uncertainties" have increased, it would "act as appropriate to sustain the expansion." That language echoed a remark Chairman Jerome Powell made two weeks ago that analysts interpreted as a signal that rate cuts were on the way.


Bonds Rally, Dollar Weakens After Fed Turns Dovish: Markets Wrap

Bonds Rally, Dollar Weakens After Fed Turns Dovish: Markets Wrap (Bloomberg) -- Want the lowdown on European markets? In your inbox before the open, every day. Sign up here.U.S. stocks traded close to record highs and Treasuries rallied, while the dollar weakened by the most since March after the Federal Reserve struck a dovish tone in its latest policy statement.The S&P 500 pushed within striking distance of an all-time high before paring gains. The two-year note yield slipped to as low as 1.77% after the central bank kept rates steady and signaled a readiness to cut interest rates for the first time in more than a decade. Moves were somewhat muted after markets had been pricing in such a turn for the past few weeks. Crude oil fluctuated. “We’re definitely hearing a decidedly more dovish Fed,” said Mike Loewengart, vice president of investment strategy at E*TRADE Financial. “While you could point the finger at pressure from the White House, it’s key to remember that the Fed’s focus has always been on two things and two things only: Jobs and inflation.” Chairman Jerome Powell and colleagues dropped a reference in their statement to being “patient” on borrowing costs and forecast a larger miss of their 2% inflation target this year. Policy makers kept their key rate in a range of 2.25% to 2.5%.As many of the world’s biggest central banks signal a shift to easier policy, traders are weighing that against trade war fears and signs of cooling global growth. U.S. President Donald Trump said Tuesday that he had a “very good” phone conversation with Chinese President Xi Jinping. The two leaders will hold an “extended meeting” at the G-20 summit on June 28-29 in Osaka.“Members of the Fed handed the markets what they were looking for by now predicting rate cuts,” said Bryce Doty, senior vice president at Sit Investment Associates. “I can’t help feeling that many will see that a precedent has been set: Higher trade tariffs bring rate cuts.”These are the main moves in markets: StocksThe S&P 500 Index rose 0.2% as of 2:48 p.m. New York time, while the Nasdaq Composite Index gained 0.1% and the Dow Jones Industrial Average increased less than 0.2%.The Stoxx Europe 600 was little changed.The MSCI Emerging Market Index climbed 1.6%, the biggest increase in more than a week.The MSCI Asia Pacific Index surged 2%, the highest in six weeks on the largest jump in more than five months. CurrenciesThe Bloomberg Dollar Spot Index declined as much as 0.4%, the most on an intraday basis since March 20.The euro rose 0.2% to $1.1206, while the yen weakened less than 0.1% at 108.35 per dollar.The British pound rose 0.6% to $1.2632, the biggest rise in more than a week.The MSCI Emerging Markets Currency Index rose 0.5%.BondsThe yield on 10-year Treasuries fell 2 basis points to 2.04%.Germany’s 10-year yield climbed 3 basis points to -0.29%. CommoditiesWest Texas Intermediate fell 0.6% to $53.57 a barrel.Gold rose 0.3% to $1,350 an ounce.The Bloomberg Commodity Index dropped 0.5%.To contact the reporters on this story: Sarah Ponczek in New York at sponczek2@bloomberg.net;Vildana Hajric in New York at vhajric1@bloomberg.netTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Jeremy Herron at jherron8@bloomberg.net, Dave LiedtkaFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.


Trump’s picks for administration jobs keep dropping out

Trump’s picks for administration jobs keep dropping out More than five dozen of President Trump's nominees withdrew or saw their nominations pulled before they were put through the confirmation process.


Some BlockchainK2 (CVE:BITK) Shareholders Have Taken A Painful 92% Share Price Drop

Some BlockchainK2 (CVE:BITK) Shareholders Have Taken A Painful 92% Share Price Drop Long term investing is the way to go, but that doesn't mean you should hold every stock forever. It hits us in the gut...


Canada opens probe into 250,000 GM pickups, SUVs over brake performance

Canada opens probe into 250,000 GM pickups, SUVs over brake performance The U.S. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) in November into 2.73 million U.S. 2014-2016 model year SUVs and pickups after receiving 487 reports of hard brake pedal effort accompanied by extended stopping distance that were attributed to deterioration of the engine-driven brake assist vacuum pump.


T-Mobile and Sprint Might Clear Major Merger Hurdle, Still Face Another

T-Mobile and Sprint Might Clear Major Merger Hurdle, Still Face Another There's still a lawsuit to deal with.


If You Had Bought Troy Energy (CVE:TEG.H) Stock Three Years Ago, You Could Pocket A 200% Gain Today

If You Had Bought Troy Energy (CVE:TEG.H) Stock Three Years Ago, You Could Pocket A 200% Gain Today It hasn't been the best quarter for Troy Energy Corp. (CVE:TEG.H) shareholders, since the share price has fallen 25...


What Should You Know About The Future Of BJ's Wholesale Club Holdings, Inc.'s (NYSE:BJ)?

What Should You Know About The Future Of BJ's Wholesale Club Holdings, Inc.'s (NYSE:BJ)? After BJ's Wholesale Club Holdings, Inc.'s (NYSE:BJ) earnings announcement on 04 May 2019, analyst consensus outlook...


Coal comeback? Trump plan breathes new life into aging power plants, but critics say climate will suffer

Coal comeback? Trump plan breathes new life into aging power plants, but critics say climate will suffer The Trump administration announced it is replacing Obama's Clean Power plan to combat climate change with one that boosts coal use.


Lower Interest Rates Coming? Here's What It Means for You

Lower Interest Rates Coming? Here's What It Means for You Get ready. The Federal Reserve wants to start cutting rates.


Does Sensient Technologies Corporation's (NYSE:SXT) 33% Earnings Growth Reflect The Long-Term Trend?

Does Sensient Technologies Corporation's (NYSE:SXT) 33% Earnings Growth Reflect The Long-Term Trend? After looking at Sensient Technologies Corporation's (NYSE:SXT) latest earnings announcement (31 March 2019), I found...


The BIO-key International (NASDAQ:BKYI) Share Price Is Down 79% So Some Shareholders Are Rather Upset

The BIO-key International (NASDAQ:BKYI) Share Price Is Down 79% So Some Shareholders Are Rather Upset This week we saw the BIO-key International, Inc. (NASDAQ:BKYI) share price climb by 15%. But will that heal all the...


No Rate Cut Yet -- Here’s What Investors Need to Know About the June Fed Meeting

No Rate Cut Yet -- Here’s What Investors Need to Know About the June Fed Meeting The Fed didn’t cut interest rates, but there’s a lot more to the story.


What Does SunCoke Energy, Inc.'s (NYSE:SXC) Balance Sheet Tell Us About It?

What Does SunCoke Energy, Inc.'s (NYSE:SXC) Balance Sheet Tell Us About It? Investors are always looking for growth in small-cap stocks like SunCoke Energy, Inc. (NYSE:SXC), with a market cap of...


Text of the Fed's statement after its meeting Wednesday

Text of the Fed's statement after its meeting Wednesday Information received since the Federal Open Market Committee met in May indicates that the labor market remains strong and that economic activity is rising at a moderate rate. Job gains have been solid, on average, in recent months, and the unemployment rate has remained low. Consistent with its statutory mandate, the Committee seeks to foster maximum employment and price stability.


Two Painful Truths of America’s Religious Culture War

Two Painful Truths of America’s Religious Culture War The fundamental, founding structure of our American nation is relatively simple. While the federal government should seek the common good, its first responsibility is to secure the liberty of its citizens. Conversely, while citizens should seek to influence their nation through government, their first responsibility is to exercise their liberty toward virtuous ends. This is the essence of the ordered liberty envisioned by the Founders. Government protects our “unalienable rights,” yet at the same time our Constitution is made for a “moral and religious people” and is “wholly inadequate to the government of any other.”Failure on either end — failure of the government to protect liberty or failure of the people to be virtuous — breaks the compact and places unacceptable strains on our nation and culture. As Christian communities face increasing governmental hostility and struggle with declining church attendance, it’s time for both sides of our nation’s religious culture war to confront their role in disrupting these core principles of the American founding. Here are two painful truths: Secular government is breaking its promise of liberty, and the American church is breaking its promise of virtue.First, the mainly progressive effort to restrict the free exercise of religion is plainly illiberal and contrary to the constitutional order. If there is one single legal strand that ties together the myriad threats to religious liberty and free speech in the United States — efforts to coerce Catholic hospitals and adoption agencies into violating their convictions, to toss Christian student groups off campuses, to force Christian institutions to facilitate access to abortifacients, to compel the speech of Christian creative professionals, or to place in doubt the accreditation and tax exemptions of Christian educational institutions — it’s that they depend for their success on inverting the proper constitutional order.Progressive government passes sweeping and intrusive statutes and regulations and then treats the free-exercise and free-speech claims of religious individuals and institutions as a form of special pleading. Yet this gets the legal hierarchy upside down. The Constitution — including the First Amendment, of course — is the supreme law of the land, and statutes and regulations are making claims against it. Thus, the default proposition is that free speech, free exercise, and voluntary association enjoy protection, with that protection to fall away only in the face of compelling governmental interests, enacted through the least restrictive means.Efforts to chip away at this default structure aim to disrupt the primacy of liberty and the legal primacy of the Constitution. So, when people of faith decry attacks on religious freedom, they’re not merely an interest group seeking accommodation; they’re citizens seeking to maintain the core principles of the American founding.This brings us to the second truth. Even while religious conservatives are right to fight for their liberties, we need to understand that no government or cultural institution is more responsible for the decline of the church than the church itself. All too many Christians look at falling Sunday-morning attendance and increasing faithlessness and lash out — at Hollywood, at academia, or at (to take a recent example) “drag-queen story hour.”Instead, we should be more focused on lashing in — at hypocrisy, at adultery, at abuse, and all the sins besetting our nation’s congregations. Drag-queen story hours could populate our libraries from coast to coast and they would do far less damage to American Christianity than the continued proliferation of the Catholic/Protestant abuse crisis.Not one Christian parent has to take his or her child to see a drag queen at the library, but all too many Christian parents have had to explain the moral collapse of pastors and church leaders to their kids. All too many Christian wives have had to deal with the devastation of a husband addicted to porn, and all too many Christian spouses have had to pick up the pieces after infidelity and divorce.Even worse, we often do the opposite of the thing that Paul commanded — we are oh so understanding of our own failings while oh so intolerant of the world’s sins. First Corinthians 5, verses 9 through 12 are among the least-observed and most-defied verses in the Bible:> I wrote to you in my letter not to associate with sexually immoral people — not at all meaning the sexually immoral of this world, or the greedy and swindlers, or idolaters, since then you would need to go out of the world. But now I am writing to you not to associate with anyone who bears the name of brother if he is guilty of sexual immorality or greed, or is an idolater, reviler, drunkard, or swindler — not even to eat with such a one. For what have I to do with judging outsiders? Is it not those inside the church whom you are to judge?He wrote those words from within a depraved Roman culture — a world that was replete with temptations of the flesh. While he did not ignore the world’s sin, his disciplinary focus was inward, even as his evangelistic focus was outward.Wise members of the church are beginning to recognize this truth. Earlier this year, the Southern Baptist Convention’s Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission — no slouch in the defense of Christian freedom — decided to change the focus of its annual conference to examine the crisis of sex abuse in the church. My wife has publicly discussed her own experience of childhood sexual abuse at the hands of a youth pastor, and that dreadful event had more adverse impact on her faith than any secular academic class ever could.If we want the church to thrive, we should protect liberty, and that means progressive governments should be held accountable under law for their illiberal attacks on free exercise. But absent our own faithfulness, every legal or political victory will be for naught. We’ll continue to bleed members, lose our witness, and close our doors. Our true challenge lies not with the drag queens without but rather with the adulterers and abusers within.


Trans Mountain oil pipeline expansion may start in September

Trans Mountain oil pipeline expansion may start in September CALGARY, Alberta/WINNIPEG, Manitoba (Reuters) - Construction on expanding the Trans Mountain oil pipeline could begin in September, assuming the next regulatory steps go smoothly, the project's chief executive said on Wednesday. The C$7.4 billion ($5.56 billion) project was stalled a year ago after a Canadian court ruled the federal government, which also owns Trans Mountain, failed to adequately consult indigenous groups. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau on Tuesday reapproved the expansion, cheering the oil industry but angering environmental groups.


Can Trump Fire Fed Chair Jerome Powell? What History Tells Us

Can Trump Fire Fed Chair Jerome Powell? What History Tells Us Can Trump Fire Fed Chair Jerome Powell? What History Tells Us


US stocks edge higher after Fed signals future rate cuts

US stocks edge higher after Fed signals future rate cuts U.S. stock indexes veered modestly higher Wednesday afternoon after the Federal Reserve reaffirmed that it is prepared to cut interest rates if needed to shield the economy from trade conflicts or other threats. As expected, the central bank's policymakers decided to leave the Fed's benchmark interest rate unchanged. Investors are betting on at least one interest rate cut this year, possibly as early as July.


‘As Close as They Could Come to Cutting’: Wall Street Reacts to the FOMC

‘As Close as They Could Come to Cutting’: Wall Street Reacts to the FOMC (Bloomberg) -- While the Federal Reserve held rates steady Wednesday, investors said evidence is building for a reduction later in the year. The deletion of the pledge by policy makers to stay “patient” before economic data and estimates from eight of 17 members that the Fed funds rate would fall in 2019 supported risk assets including stocks.Here’s what investors and strategists had to say:Ellen Hazen, senior vice president and portfolio manager for F.L. Putnam“Reading the tea leaves, both they and the market are setting up for cuts to happen within the next few meetings. I wouldn’t be surprised if we saw it next meeting and they’re laying the groundwork in both the speeches and the language of the statement today.”Mike DePalma, managing director at MacKay Shields:“They pretty much did what the market was expecting. They removed the word ‘patient’ from the statement, which is what everyone thought they would do. That would be the way to signal dovishness. And Powell seems to have repeated everything he said in his speech two weeks ago. So frankly, I don’t think there’s any surprises here at all. If there is a surprise, it’s that there’s some differences of opinion on the Fed -- so they didn’t all vote the same way but eight of them thought rates would be lower by the end of the year. So that’s a lot.”Chris Zaccarelli, chief investment officer for Independent Advisor Alliance:“It looks like the Fed gave the market what it wanted by removing the word patient from the statement. It also showed with the dots that they are leaning very dovishly and July is absolutely on the table as the market was predicting.”Michael Gapen, Barclays Plc economist:“This is about as close as they could come to cutting today and in fact the fate of the members are forecasting it by at least year end. It’s walking it right up to the point and the markets will now expect action in July. Yes, the outcome of the G-20 meeting matters.”Ilya Feygin, senior strategist at WallachBeth Capital LLC:“The market had a slightly dovish reaction, liking the fact that ‘patient’ was removed, ‘act as appropriate’ was inserted. Eight officials support a cut by the end of the year, and nine by 2020, and importantly the long term neutral rate comes down 30 bps, and Bullard dissents to say ‘cut it now.’ The Fed also capitulated and lowered its PCE inflation forecasts. However, this does not change the overall picture too much.”\--With assistance from Elena Popina.To contact the reporters on this story: Vildana Hajric in New York at vhajric1@bloomberg.net;Sarah Ponczek in New York at sponczek2@bloomberg.netTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Jeremy Herron at jherron8@bloomberg.net, Chris NagiFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.


Is Banco Latinoamericano de Comercio Exterior, S.A (NYSE:BLX) A Risky Dividend Stock?

Is Banco Latinoamericano de Comercio Exterior, S.A (NYSE:BLX) A Risky Dividend Stock? Is Banco Latinoamericano de Comercio Exterior, S.A (NYSE:BLX) a good dividend stock? How would you know? Dividend...


Phillips 66 Seeks Texas Terminal Project as Oil Exports Grow

Phillips 66 Seeks Texas Terminal Project as Oil Exports Grow (Bloomberg) -- Phillips 66 is looking to build an offshore export terminal in the Gulf of Mexico, a project that would join a growing list of facilities being planned to handle the growing shipments of U.S. shale oil.The proposed deepwater port would be located about 21 nautical miles off the Texas coast, near the Port of Corpus Christi, the company said Wednesday in a statement. Phillips 66, the largest U.S. refining company by market value, would construct two parallel pipelines to carry crude to the facility’s two floating jetties, known as single-point mooring buoys, according to people familiar with the matter, who asked not to be named because the plan hasn’t been announced.Any offshore terminal would require approval from the U.S. Coast Guard and the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Maritime Administration.The proposed project “would provide an additional safe and environmentally sustainable solution for the export of abundant domestic crude oil supplies from major shale basins to global markets,” Dennis Nuss, a spokesman, said in an emailed statement.Phillips is already a partner in a venture to develop a deepwater marine terminal in Ingleside, Texas. Going ahead with an offshore project as well would put the company in direct competition with commodity trading house Trafigura Group Ltd., which is developing its own terminal in the Gulf of Mexico. That proposal has faced opposition from the Port of Corpus Christi, which along with The Carlyle Group is developing an onshore export terminal. (Updates with comment from company beginning in second paragraph.)\--With assistance from Sheela Tobben.To contact the reporters on this story: Rachel Adams-Heard in Houston at radamsheard@bloomberg.net;David Wethe in Houston at dwethe@bloomberg.netTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Simon Casey at scasey4@bloomberg.net, Christine BuurmaFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.


Regulators Debate Cryptocurrency Legislation Ahead of G20 Summit

Regulators Debate Cryptocurrency Legislation Ahead of G20 Summit The new rules for crypto businesses will be released in June 21 but many regulators are already worried about the repercussions.