All eyes on the Fed and the big rates question
Published 14/09/2015 | 02:30
The eyes of the world will be on the Federal Reserve this week and the question of whether US policy makers will finally begin raising interest rates.
That decision will be taken by Janet Yellen and her colleagues on the Open Market Committee meeting of the Fed, America's central bank, due to take place on September 16 and 17.
US data suggests rates should rise, but set against that is the slowdown in China and a wave of volitilty across sectors from commodities and currencies to shares, especially in emerging markets.
Get it right and the US will finally begin to normalise its monetary system following the global markets crash, taking some of the dollar-fuelled heat out of financial markets that have raced ahead of the so-called real economy.
But call it wrong, restrict credit too soon, and the Fed risks tipping US growth off course and undermining the recovery - there, but potentially here too.
The US decision matters globally, and especially in Ireland. The US is a key trade partner, but we have also seen a flood of US investment - from traditional foreign direct investment (FDI), property acquisitions by vulture funds, and venture capital - that has coincided with the Federal Reserve's loose money policy.