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Opinion, commentary and analysis on everything that makes the U.S. housing economy tick -- not to mention the ghosts in the machine, too. Written by HW's team of editors and reporters each business day.
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Monday Morning Cup of Coffee: Federal Reserve interest rate hike guessing game

Want to recruit Millennials? SXSW is a good place to start

March 14, 2016

Monday Morning Cup of Coffee takes a look at news coming across HousingWire’s weekend desk, with more coverage to come on bigger issues.

The Federal Reserve meets this week, and the interest rate guessing game is in full swing. The consensus is clearly that the stock market woes in the early part of the year mean the Fed will postpone an interest rate hike, as an article in The New York Times explained on Sunday.

The Fed is not likely to raise rates this week, but the steady growth of the domestic economy — despite the wobbles of financial markets and the weakness of other developed nations — is strengthening the hand of officials who say that higher rates are necessary to maintain control of price inflation.
The challenge now confronting Janet Yellen, the Fed’s chairwoman, is forging a consensus among Fed officials about how soon to resume the march begun in December, when the Fed raised rates, by 0.25%, for the first time since the financial crisis.

One of the biggest stories last week was the news that hackers stole $100 million from the Bangladesh Bank's account in the Federal Reserve Bank of New York. The audacious breach, which occurred in February, actually sought to steal $1 billion from the account, but a typo in the name of the receiving entity raised red flags in the transfer process. 

In the latest wrinkle, Bangladesh's finance minister said Sunday that the Bangladesh Bank had not even informed him of the heist. From Bloomberg:

Abul Maal Abdul Muhith, the finance minister, told reporters in Dhaka on Sunday that he was going to meet Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina and planned to issue a statement on the matter, which involved the unauthorized transfer of at least $100 million from the central bank’s account with the New York Fed.

“I will certainly take some action against Bangladesh Bank,” Muhith said, without elaborating. “Bangladesh Bank has the audacity not to inform me.”

The NY Fed hack is just the latest in a series of high-profile security breaches, and reinforces the threat that financial companies are facing. Worried? Read here to find out three things you can learn from the hack to make your company safer.

The SXSW Interactive Festival kicked off on Friday, and Ten-X (formerly Auction.com) represented the real estate industry as a major interactive sponsor, providing a living room and hangout for guests.

Ten-X's chief marketing officer, Rick Sharga,  joined other business luminaries Saturday as part of a panel on Launching a Brand, and the company is also leveraging the festival to recruit new employees.

"Austin is a key market for a number of Ten-X's existing and forthcoming real estate sales products and the company will be looking to significantly increase its workforce there in the months ahead. Dozens of new positions will become available in 2016," a press release from Ten-X stated.

As the aging mortgage industry tries to find ways to attract younger employees, recruiting at SXSW seems like a smart move.

The FDIC reported one bank failure in the week ending March 11. North Milwaukee State Bank was acquired by First Citizens Bank & Trust Company.

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