Stimulus Staying, Biden Package Vote, Helicopter Money: Eco Day

Welcome to Wednesday, Asia. Here’s the latest news and analysis from Bloomberg Economics to help you start the day:

  • Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell signaled that the central bank was nowhere close to pulling back on its support for the pandemic-damaged U.S. economy even as he voiced expectations for a return to more normal, improved activity later this year
  • President Joe Biden indicated the congressional vote for his $1.9 trillion Covid-19 relief bill will be close, speaking after GOP Senator Susan Collins said she doesn’t expect a single Republican vote in favor of it
  • Sweden’s central bank must be ready to innovate if monetary policy needs to be more expansionary, and shouldn’t rule out new tools from helicopter money to deeply negative interest rates, Deputy Governor Anna Breman said
  • Weeks before the White House said it would keep tariffs in place on more than $350 billion in Chinese goods, Katherine Tai previewed the bad news to a group of U.S. business leaders
  • Bank of Canada Governor Tiff Macklem indicated he plans to maintain stimulus in the economy well into a strong labor market recovery
  • Home prices in 20 U.S. cities surged in December, with low mortgage rates fueling the housing market
  • The U.K.’s finance minister Rishi Sunak is set to spend billions of pounds in extra support for the economy over the next four months, as pandemic curbs pushed unemployment to its highest level in almost five years
  • The World Bank warned that the pandemic is reinforcing gender inequality in many countries, with women on average having roughly three-quarters of the legal rights of men, a situation that risks undermining global development

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