10/28/2008 10:34 AM
Having failed so miserably to help the US economy by repeatedly cutting interest rates over the last year (the rate stood at 5.25% as late as the spring of 2007)
, the Federal Reserve is expected to try it once again – planning to cut its target interest rate on October 29, 2008 by another one-half a percentage point (down to 1 percent … recall the definition of insanity, etc., etc…)
. One percent is the level to which the Fed cut interest rates in 2003, still trying to recover from Bush 43’s first recession in 2001.
Notwithstanding the relative ineffectiveness of such interest rate reductions, the cuts nevertheless acutely hurt the segment of Americans who are on fixed incomes, and who for years may have frugally saved some money for retirement, only to see their already-meager interest income from their small nest eggs slashed once again.
Not surprisingly, falling US home prices, chronic US unemployment and sinking stock & cash investments have driven consumer confidence to record lows in October
. The Conference Board said on October 28, 2008 that the US consumer confidence index fell to 38, down from a revised 61.4 just last month. That’s 38, folks --- the lowest level for the index since the Conference Board began tracking consumer sentiment some 41 years ago!
Another dubious mark for the current administration in Washington!