After two consecutive days of losses, both gold and silver are picking up a little bit of value as of the writing of this post Wednesday morning. This week has been somewhat quiet due to a lack of markets-moving economic data, but with the latest FOMC meeting wrapping up sometime this afternoon, investors will have plenty to focus their attention on.
Another major focus for the market this week is the slump currently being experienced by the Russian economy. Due to a combination of Western sanctions and falling crude oil prices, the Russian ruble has lost more than 50% of its value this year and is continuing to decline. Just yesterday, the central bank of Russia decided to raise interest rates in an emergency move to combat the declining ruble. With Putin so eagerly flexing his military muscle in recent months, some worry that he may lash out as a result of his failing economy. This, of course, is mere speculation, but it is definitely something investors should be paying attention to.
FOMC Post-Meeting Press Conference Awaited
Every time the FOMC meets for their monthly meeting, the marketplace perks up and pays particularly close attention. In recent months, this has never been truer as investors from around the world are clamoring to be the first to receive word of the next US monetary policy shift. On the slate for this meeting is the expectation that the Fed will unearth its plans for raising interest rates.
For the last half year or more, investors from the United States and abroad have enamored themselves with speculation regarding when interest rates will be raised, and by how much they will be raised by. Countless rumors have come to fruition as a result of all this speculation, but up to this point, almost none of them have had any real basis in reality.
This time around, speculation holds that the FOMC will finally announce when interest rate hikes can be expected as well as how much rates will be hiked by. For this reason, you are currently witnessing a market that is wholly preoccupied with what this afternoon will bring. All eyes and ears will be on the FOMC’s post-meeting press conference, as that is usually the place where a bulk of the meeting’s contents are divulged.
In addition to the FOMC meeting, investors have also concerned themselves with the price action of crude oil, but to be honest, most things have taken a back seat to all this FOMC talk. Perhaps as this afternoon comes and goes, the attention of investors will be more evenly spread across the global marketplace.
As surprising as it is, the market has not really had much of a reaction to terrorist attacks that have taken place in Australia and Pakistan over the course of the past few days. Though more than likely isolated incidents, the market usually becomes on-edge whenever an attack occurs.