유럽의 주요 중앙은행 두 곳이 세계적인 금융위기의 영향을 완화하기 위해 기준 금리를 내렸습니다.
오늘 유럽 중앙은행은 기준금리를 이 은행이 설립된 이후 가장 큰 폭인 0.75% 포인트 내렸습니다. 영국 중앙은행도 이자율을 2%까지 내려 1959년 이후 가장 낮은 수준을 기록했습니다.
미국 정부도 주택대출 금리를 내리고, 주택시장을 안정시킬 대책을 강구하고 있습니다. 재무부는 새 주택 대출금에 낮은 이자율이 적용된다는 조건으로 이와 관련된 투자를 하는 방안을 고려하고 있습니다.
Europe's two leading central banks are cutting key interest rates in an effort to ease the impact of the global financial crisis.
Officials of the European Central Bank made the biggest rate cut in the bank's history today (Wednesday) (a three-quarters-of-one-percent cut, putting the key rate at two-and-a-half percent). Meanwhile, the Bank of England slashed its interest rate (by a full percentage point, putting the key rate at two percent) to the lowest level since 1959.
Lower interest rates make it cheaper for people to borrow money to pay for homes, businesses and other investments that fuel the economy.
The U.S. government is considering taking steps to influence home loan rates, to help stabilize the U.S. housing market. Under the plan, the Treasury Department would buy investments linked to new home loans, under the condition that those loans are set at a low interest rate (of four-point-five percent). The goal is to make it easier for consumers to borrow the money needed to buy homes.
Another economic report showed the U.S. job market improved slightly but remains weak. The Labor Department says 21-thousand fewer newly laid-off workers applied for unemployment assistance, but the overall number (509-thousand) remains high. And the number of people continuing to get jobless assistance hit a 26-year high (of just over four-million).