Stocks on Wall Street open higher

Friday, 14 Jul, 2017

Stephen Innes, senior trader from Oanda sees this as good sign as "it will keep the equity markets in a pretty good mood". The benchmark closed at a three week low in the previous session, falling almost 1 percent to 5,673.8. Unemployment was 4.4 percent in June and employers have added 187,000 jobs a month on average over the past 12 months.

Yellen's remarks this week come as the Fed is picking up the pace of its interest rate hikes, which will eventually impact millions of Americans - from savers to home buyers to investors.

"It is premature to conclude the underlying inflation trend is falling well short of 2 percent", Yellen told the Senate Banking Committee on Thursday in Washington. Final inflation figures for the major EU economies were released ahead of the European session, confirming the flash data and hence without significant impact on the euro.

She also expects further gains in USA exports.

"The Bank of Canada this week raised interest rates and the ECB could signal its intentions to continue to reduce its bond buying next week while the Bank of England may not be far behind on tightening".

The Canadian dollar edged higher against its United States counterpart, a day after the Canadian central bank raised interest rates for the first time since 2010.

Shortly after her testimony, the Fed released a report on the economy showing most U.S. regions saw "slight to moderate" growth in June, and few signs of price pressures, even while some firms report having to offer higher wages to attract qualified workers.

Some economists expect the committee to cut rates later in the year, citing a benign inflation profile and weak economic growth prospects.

At 1445 BST, the dollar was down 0.4% at 0.7728 against the pound, flat against the euro at 0.8763 and 0.2% firmer versus the yen at 113.35.

However, she noted that considerable uncertainty in inflation always effect the economic outlook.

Some analysts believe that Fed is most likely to make an announcement on the balance-sheet reduction after the September 19-20 meeting, and raise the federal funds rate at the December 12-13 meeting.

"There is a long history of presidents re-nominating Fed chairs that their predecessors originally named", she said, asking Yellen if she was "open to serving another four years" if asked to do so by Trump. Several officials believe the Fed likely will maintain a portfolio to exceed $2 trillion. A shrinking of its balance sheet, like raising interest rates, is aimed at eventually normalizing monetary policy and removing the extraordinary Fed support provided over the last decade.