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Federal Reserve keeps rates steady, citing slight pick up in economy activity Updated: 2020-07-30 09:39:14 KST


In a widely expected move, the Federal Reserve kept its benchmark interest rate steady at a target of zero percent to a quarter of a percent.
Following a two-day policy meeting that ended Wednesday, the Federal Open Market Committee pointed out that economic activity has picked up somewhat in recent months.

"In recent months, economic activity picked up as the economy began to reopen. Many businesses opened their doors. Factories restarted production and more people left their homes to engage in various activities. As a result, household spending looks to have recovered about half of its earlier decline."

Powell highlighted further that the economic path will depend significantly on the course of the coronavirus.
He vowed to use full range of tools to support the U.S. economy in such a challenging environment.
The committee, however, did not further indicate what it would take to change rates.
The interest rate has remained the same since Marchin the early days of the pandemic.
The Fed slashed its benchmark interest rate to zero percent to a point-two-five percent from the previous one to one and a quarter percent on March 15.
Along with holding the rates near rock bottom, the central bank will also extend its lending and credit initiatives until at least the end of the year.
On the same day, South Korea and the U.S. decided to extend their 60-billion U.S. dollar bilateral currency swap deal by another six months, as they look to ease lingering market uncertainties in the pandemic era.
With the development, the deal, initially set to finish at the end of September has now been extended until the end of March 2021.
The Bank of Korea said Thursday that despite both the U.S. dollar and Korea's foreign exchange markets showing signs of stabilizing, the virus is still a concern.
The deal marks the second of its kind to be signed with the U.S. after the Korean won-dollar swap line was sealed in October 2008 at the height of the global financial crisis.
Kim Dami, Arirang News.
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