As was widely expected, the Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) raised its federal funds target rate range by 25 basis points to between 1¾ and 2 percent. The statement noted solid economic growth, declining unemployment and a pickup in household spending. The relatively upbeat assessment was reflected in upgraded near-term economic forecasts and lower expectations for the unemployment rate. Fed Chair Powell also announced that he will hold press conferences after every meeting from 2019 and expressed optimism about the economy. He was somewhat more cautious on wages. The US Dollar initially increased but decreased afterward.
The next market moving events for today remain the UK retail sales and ECB decision, with a no change in the interest rates already priced-in by the markets. However, any announcements on QE taper could trigger a fresh EUR rally across the board. Meanwhile, the UK retail sales data is likely to show a sharp decline in the month of May, with a 0.5% reading expected versus 1.6% previous. In the NA session, the ECB press conference and US retail sales report will hog the limelight among other minority reports.