Facing headwinds and crises on all sides, the European Central Bank is likely to begin a super aggressive phase of monetary policy today, with the largest hike in the institution's 24-year history. Most economists see a jumbo-sized 0.75 percentage point increase in the cards, after the bank raised interest rates by a half percentage point in July. That hike was its first in more than a decade (and the first since the pandemic), and highlighted how severely the ECB is behind the US Federal Reserve.
Speaking of the Fed, Lael Brainard, vice-chair of the Federal Reserve, yesterday reinforced expectations that the US central bank would opt for a third consecutive 3/4 percentage-point rate rise at its meeting later this month. Futures markets implied an 81 per cent chance that the Fed would opt for an increase of that magnitude after Brainard’s speech at a banking conference in New York.
Apple unveiled updates to its iPhone, AirPods and Apple Watch product lines on Wednesday, including the new Apple Watch Series 8 and iPhone 14 with satellite connectivity. Chief Executive Tim Cook kicked off the event, noting that all three products are "essential in our lives, and by adding satellite connectivity – Apple is working on making sure that you’re never disconnected.