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Selasa, 09 Agustus 2011

Markets look to Fed after ECB buys bonds - Reuters

(Reuters) - Investors are looking to a meeting of the Federal Reserve on Tuesday for signs of further support for reeling financial markets and the economy after the European Central Bank stepped in to buy Italian and Spanish government bonds in the latest attempt to deal with the euro zone debt crisis.

Over the weekend the G7 and G20 group finance ministers pledged coordinated action to ensure financial market stability and economic growth after world stock markets lost $3.4 trillion in value since July 29 on investor concern that slowing global economic growth would make it even harder for heavily indebted countries to pay their debts.

Late Friday the United States lost its prized AAA credit rating from Standard and Poor's, reflecting the agency's fear that political gridlock in Washington, D.C would prevent the government from cutting its budget deficit and reducing its debt.

U.S. President Barack Obama on Monday said he hoped Friday's credit rating downgrade will give Congress a new sense of urgency to tackle the government's budget deficit.

Stock markets around the world fell further on Monday and investors rushed into safe-haven assets like U.S. Treasury debt, despite the U.S. rating downgrade, as well as gold. Gold soared to almost $1,720 an ounce in its biggest surge since March 2009. Major U.S. stock market indices were down about 5.0 percent by mid-afternoon after European stocks fell to a two-year low.

"The sell-off is mainly due to the fear that we will relapse into recession," said Klaus Wiener, chief economist at Generali Investments, which manages 330 billion euros ($468 billion). "Many investors have finally realized that the U.S. economy will not grow at 3.0 percent."

ECB TO THE RESCUE

In Europe, traders estimated the ECB bought about 2 billion euros in Italian and Spanish debt after it agreed on Sunday to broaden its controversial bond-buying program for the first time to include the bloc's third- and fourth-biggest economies. Read More

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