Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke, chief inflation-watcher for the U.S. economy.(Photo: Manuel Balce Ceneta, AP)
WASHINGTON (AP) - Investors are awaiting today's report on the second-quarter gross domestic product as well as an update on interest rates from the Federal Reserve.
Few expect the Fed to announce what investors are most interested in finding out, which is when it will slow its bond purchases, which have kept long-term borrowing rates low. However, the Fed could clarify when it may raise its key short-term rate. The Fed has kept that rate near zero since 2008.
This morning's GDP report is expected to show the economy grew at a dismal pace from April to June, weighed down by tax increases and government spending cuts. Economists surveyed by FactSet expect to hear that growth slowed to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of just 1 percent. That's below the tepid rate of 1.8 percent in the January-March quarter.
Also today, the Labor Department releases the second-quarter employment cost index.