Americans are waiting with bated breath as the Fed tries to reel in inflation without tipping us into a recession. Doubts are rising. Former Fed Vice Chair Roger Ferguson told CNBC’s “Squawk Box,” “A recession at this stage is almost inevitable. It’s a witch’s brew, and the probability of a recession, I think, is unfortunately very, very high because their tool is crude and all they can control is aggregate demand.” In other news, gold prices may be dipping, but Wells Fargo strategists say investors shouldn’t give up hope on the precious metals. Head of real asset strategy John LaForge told Kitco News, “Gold had been slowly outperforming most other commodities from 2005 all the way up to 2020. And it’s given all that relative strength back in two years. And it’s a head-scratcher because it shouldn’t do it that fast,” LaForge pointed out. “The value is there. We’re in the middle of a supercycle. I think this whole unloved gold thing will turn around.”

 

CNBC/Jeff Cox
Fears of a Fed mistake grow as this week’s anticipated interest rate hike looms

The Federal Reserve is tasked with slowing the U.S. economy enough to control inflation but not so much that it tips into recession.

Financial markets expect the central bank on Wednesday to announce a half-percentage point increase in the Fed’s benchmark interest rate. The fed funds rate controls the amount that banks charge each other for short-term borrowing but also serves as a signpost for many forms of consumer debt.

Doubts are rising about whether it can pull it off, even among some former Fed officials. Wall Street saw another day of whipsaw trading Monday afternoon, with the Dow Jones Industrial Average and S&P 500 rebounding after being down more than 1% earlier in the session.

Read the full story, here.

 

Kitco News/Anna Golubova
Gold is ‘the most confusing’ of all commodities right now, here’s why

Gold is abandoning its usual drivers and is focusing solely on the U.S. dollar, with prices tumbling around $50 on the day at the start of May trading. But the “unloved” metal could surprise the markets with a $2,100 year-end price target as investors shift their asset allocations, Wells Fargo’s head of real asset strategy John LaForge told Kitco News.

The way gold behaved this year has surprised many investors, especially when the precious metal chose to ignore the risk-on/risk-off sentiment in the marketplace.

LaForge described gold’s trading action as “the most confusing of all the commodities.”

Continue reading, here.

 

Axios/Ivana Saric
Samantha Power: Food shortages “another catastrophic effect” of Russia’s war

Soaring global food shortages are “another catastrophic effect” of Russia’s unprovoked invasion of Ukraine, USAID administrator Samantha Power told ABC’s “This Week” on Sunday.

Russia and Ukraine supplied about 30% of the world’s wheat and barley before the war. Thirty-six countries, including some of the world’s most vulnerable and impoverished, relied on them for more than half of their wheat imports.

UN Secretary-General António Guterres warned in March that the war in Ukraine threatened to lead to “a global hunger crisis.”

You can read the full story, here.

 

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