Fed Ready for Unlimited QE and Aid for Companies, Municipalities
“The Federal Reserve on Monday announced a massive second wave of initiatives to support a shuttered U.S. economy, including buying an unlimited amount of bonds to keep borrowing costs low and setting up programs to ensure credit flows to corporations and state and local governments. The Fed will buy Treasuries and agency mortgage-backed securities “in the amounts needed to support smooth market functioning and effective transmission of monetary policy to broader financial conditions and the economy,” and will also buy agency commercial mortgage-backed securities, according to a statement. The Fed had said a week ago it would buy at least $500 billion of Treasuries and $200 billion of agency MBS.”
Europe Is About to Get First Glimpse at Virus Economic Damage
Europe is about to learn how badly the coronavirus has already scarred its economy, with the true extent of the damage still hard to grasp. Large parts of the continent are under lockdown to rein in the disease, affecting everything from mom-and-pop stores to manufacturing giants like Volkswagen AG, and pushing the region into recession. Reports due on activity and sentiment in March could show huge declines, reflecting the unprecedented paralysis of the economy.
Korean Trade Data Shows Snapshot of Calm Before Virus Storm.
“Early South Korea trade figures for March showed surprising resilience in exports before the full brunt of the coronavirus hit. Shipment during the first 20 days of the month rose 10% from a year earlier, the Korea Customs Service said Monday. The period had an extra 1.5 working days in the period compared with 2019. Without that, the result would have been just about flat.”
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