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Trump Says Fed Should Reduce Rates to ‘Zero, or Less’



Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell


Manuel Balce Ceneta/Associated Press

WASHINGTON—President Trump renewed his call for lower interest rates and his criticism of the Federal Reserve Wednesday, saying on Twitter that the Fed should reduce rates to “ZERO, or less.”

He said the U.S. should always be paying the lowest rate and complained that the “naivete” of Chairman

Jerome Powell

and the Fed means that this was a “once in a lifetime opportunity that we are missing because of ‘Boneheads.’”

The Fed couldn’t immediately be reached for comment.

After cutting their benchmark interest rate in July by a quarter percentage point, Fed officials are gearing up to cut rates again, likely by another quarter point, at their Sept. 17-18 policy meeting.

Mr. Powell, who has defended the Fed’s independence from political pressure, framed the July decision to lower the Fed’s benchmark short-term rate to a range between 2% and 2.25% as a “mid-cycle adjustment.”

The global growth and trade outlook has deteriorated since then amid an escalation in the trade war with China.

The president said last month that the Fed should cut its benchmark interest rate by at least a full percentage point and resume its crisis-era program of buying bonds to lower long-term borrowing costs. Such moves would typically be considered only when the economy faces a substantial downturn.

President Trump and White House officials have said they don’t believe the U.S. is headed toward a slowdown, but also have floated other ideas, such as tax cuts, to boost the economy.

A rate cut of the magnitude Mr. Trump is calling for hasn’t happened since the global financial crisis in late 2008.

In comments last week, Mr. Powell said the U.S. economy faced a favorable outlook despite significant risks from weaker global growth and trade uncertainty.

Write to Catherine Lucey at

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How to choose a financial planner, a step-by-step guide




Knowing how to choose a financial planner can be tricky if you’ve never done it before. First things first: Look for a fee-only adviser.kate_sept2004/Getty Images

Many people want to know how to choose a financial planner, and for good reason. There are few people you put more trust in than a financial planner. This important relationship has large and lasting repercussions for your money, so you should take extreme care when choosing a financial adviser or financial planner.

While you should always look into certifications and credentials, there is a lot more to a financial planning relationship than making sure your planner has passed a test.

You also want to make sure the financial planner aligns with your goals and requirements on pricing, investment strategy, and is someone you enjoy working with.

If you want to know how to choose a financial adviser, follow this guide for more details to consider.

How to choose a financial planner

A financial planner will likely have access to all of your financial information, if not direct access or control over your financial accounts. With such a deep relationship, you should do online research to choose some top financial planners in your area and then interview at least two or three to pick a favorite.

SmartAsset’s free tool can help you find a qualified financial adviser in your area. Find your match today »

Planners can vary widely in what they charge, how they work, and what they think is best for your money in your situation. These are some of the most important questions and criteria to keep in mind as you work through how to choose a financial planner.

How do they charge?

The first question to ask upfront is what you’ll pay. If a financial adviser’s pricing doesn’t align with your requirements, that’s a deal-breaker.

Many financial planners charge based on the dollar value of assets under management. Others charge a predictable, flat fee for any planning and advising services.

What’s their investment style?

A good financial planner will get a sense of your risk tolerance and investment goals and build a portfolio to suit your needs. But that ideal portfolio may look different to different planners. Some might like a passive, buy and hold approach. Others prefer an active investment style.

Pick a financial planner who matches your style, don’t change your style to fit your planner.

Are there any conflicts of interest?

Some financial planners are paid kickback commissions when they sell specific products or funnel your funds into specific mutual funds. This is absolutely a conflict of interest. I would never pick a financial planner where this conflict exists under any circumstances.

You’ll want to look for a financial planner who is a fiduciary, meaning they have an obligation to act always and solely in your best interest.

Find a qualified, fee-only financial adviser using SmartAsset’s free tool »

Do they work with clients like you?

If you find a financial planner who specializes in finances for Baby Boomers, a millennial might not think that specific planner is a good fit. It doesn’t mean they are bad at their job, they just might not be right for you.

Make sure your new financial planner has experience helping people in your situation handle similar challenges and goals.

How have they performed in the past?

Past performance is no guarantee of future results, but it can be a good indicator of what to expect. If an adviser’s clients consistently underperform against market benchmarks, they may not be worth the cost.

How do they communicate?

If you like email and text messages, don’t hire a financial planner who only wants to meet by phone. And if you love the phone, you might not want a planner who prefers to send everything digitally.

Again, there is no right or wrong. It’s about what you prefer and finding the right match.

Learning how to choose a financial planner is kind of like dating. You may have to sift through many fish before finding a few that could be a good fit.

After interviewing, or dating, a few, you know enough to make a longer-term decision. But whatever you do, don’t rush and pick a financial planner unless you’re sure they are the right person for you.

Ready to talk to a few financial planners and find the right one for you? SmartAsset’s free tool can connect you to qualified advisers in your area »

More coverage from How to Do Everything: Money

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How to make your phone safer, according to security experts




Smartphone users rely on their devices for just about everything: business, shopping, communication, entertainment, and the list goes on.

According to Pew Research Center, 81% of Americans have a smartphone, and reportedly the average user checks theirs more than 50 times a day.

But despite our reliance on our phones, many of us are not using them safely.

Related: The 11 most sophisticated online scams right now that the average person falls for

Consider the most basic of safety precautions: locking your home screen. According to a 2017 Pew report, nearly 30% of smartphone owners do not use a screen lock or other security features to access their phone.

Lapses like that can make users prey to cybersecurity breaches. To avoid having personal information and passwords stolen, take these 10 safety precautions to make your mobile device more secure.

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Trump Told Ukraine to Investigate Biden Eight Times in One Conversation – Fox News



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For any copyright, please send me a message. Earlier today, Donald Trump claimed that an apparently alarming conversation he held with the president of Ukraine, which reportedly resulted in a whistle-blower complaint deemed a matter of “urgent concern,” was “perfectly fine and respectful” and, in fact, “pitch perfect!” New reporting, however, suggests that’s not actually the case, unless urging another country to investigate your political rival’s son numerous times is now considered acceptable behavior by the president of the United States. (Given the GOP’s historic attitude toward Trump, it’s possible it is.) The Wall Street Journal reports that during a July phone call, Trump pressed Volodymyr Zelensky eight times to work with Rudy Giuliani to probe Hunter Biden’s ties to a Ukrainian gas company. It’s unclear how long the call lasted, but even if it was an hour long, that’s a lot of interrupting to say, Okay, but you really need to investigate this Biden situation. “He told him that he should work with [Mr. Giuliani] on Biden, and that people in Washington wanted to know” if the allegations (raised by Giuliani that former V.P. Joe Biden tried to shield the Hunter Biden-connected company from investigation) were true, said a person familiar with the matter. According to this person, Trump didn’t offer foreign aid to Ukraine during the call, and the person “didn’t believe Mr. Trump offered the Ukrainian president any quid pro quo for his cooperation on any investigation.” In June and August, Giuliani met with top Ukrainian officials about the possibility of a Biden investigation, despite a Ukrainian official saying earlier this year that there was no evidence of wrongdoing by either Joe Biden or his son. The former mayor’s August meeting, per the Journal, came just weeks before the Trump administration started reviewing the status of $250 million in aid to Ukraine, which was released to the country this month. While the acting director of national intelligence has thus far refused to send Congress the whistle-blower complaint, as the law says he is obligated to do, lawmakers are separately investigating if Trump or Giuliani tried to pressure the Ukrainian government to pursue investigations in an attempt to benefit Trump’s 2020 chances. On Thursday, Giuliani told Chris Cuomo that “of course” he told Ukraine to probe alleged wrongdoing by Joe Biden, later saying on Twitter that it’s the president’s “job” and not an abuse of power to pressure another country to investigate alleged “corruption” by his competition. If you would like to receive the Levin Report in your inbox daily, click here to subscribe. How are those trade talks with China going? Not great, Bob!Most PopularGood Help Is Hard To FindRudy Giuliani Is


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