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US rates -0.5% Oz on hold

Today the US Federal Reserve Board reduced short term interest rates 0.5% to 1.25%pa, the lowest level in 41 years. Yesterday the Australian Reserve Bank kept rates on hold at 4.75%.

The Fed is trying to keep the US economy stimulated to avoid recession and a deflating downward spiral as happend to Japan in recent years.

Another significant event in the US financial world today was the annoucement of the resignation of the head of the Securities and Exchange Commission, Harvey Pitt. There had been crticism of Pitt that he was not tough enough on company regulation and audit in the "post Enron" environment of greater focus on corporate governance.

Posted Thursday, 7 November 2002

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