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Should The Fed Raise Interest Rates?47:22
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Should the Fed finally raise interest rates? In spite of the stock market roller coaster? We’ll dig into the Fed weighing the end of free money.

A television screen on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange shows the decision of the Federal Reserve, on July 29, 2015. The Federal Reserve may raise interest rates soon. (Richard Drew/AP)
A television screen on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange shows the decision of the Federal Reserve, on July 29, 2015. The Federal Reserve may raise interest rates soon. (Richard Drew/AP)

We all come to the meal of the American economy — feast or beans, depending where you sit. But the Federal Reserve Bank sets the table. For years now, since the onslaught of the Great Recession, the Fed has kept its key benchmark interest rate at essentially zero. Easy money, almost free, to boost the U.S. economy. It's been a busy for small savers — look at your bank returns. A boon for high-rollers — look where the stock market's been. Now the Fed wants to push interest rates up. Critics say it's too soon. Jobs and wages will suffer. Stocks are shaky. But is it time? This hour on On Point: weighing the end of free money.
- Tom Ashbrook

Guests

Ben Leubsdorf, a reporter for the Wall Street Journal covering the economy and the Federal Reserve. (@BenLeubsdorf)

William Cohan, contributing editor to Vanity Fair and columnist for Bloomberg View and a former Wall Street Banker at Lazard Freers & Co. He is also the author of "Money and Power: How Goldman Sachs Came to Rule the World," "House of Cards: A Tale of Hubris and Wretched Excess on Wall Street" and "The Last Tycoons: The Secret History of Lazard Frères & Co." (@WilliamCohan)

Josh Bivens, Research and Policy Director at the Economic Policy Institute. He is the author of "Failure by Design: The Story Behind America's Broken Economy" and "Everybody Wins Except for Most of Us: What Economics Really Teachs About Globalization." (@joshbivens_DC)

Rana Foroohar, assistant managing editor and columnist for Time Magazine. Global economic analyst for CNN. (@RanaForoohar)

Tom's Reading List

New York Times: Show Some Spine, Federal Reserve - "Yes, it would be a little painful to start having to pay a little more for short-term borrowing and, yes, the net worth of Wall Street billionaires might increase at a slightly lower rate, but it looks as if the moment is at hand to end the morphine drip."

Economic Policy Institute: How Worried Should We Be About The Stock Market's Recent Declines? - "All in all, the stock market is a terrible gauge of overall economy-wide health, so even large swings in it by themselves do not provide much of a signal for how to assess this broader health."

Wall Street Journal Video: Three Takeaways From The Fed Meeting - After a week of market upheaval and speculation about whether the Federal Reserve will raise rates , WSJ chief economics correspondent Jon Hilsenrath discusses three takeaways from the Fed's annual meeting in Jackson Hole, Wyoming.

This program aired on September 3, 2015.

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