Donald Trump started the week by offering some advice to Democrats, saying they need to ‘loosen up and have fun’, even as the government prepared for another shutdown within a week.
It was looking as if initial hope of an agreement between Republicans and Democrats was misplaced, with representatives from both sides saying they were not confident a deal can be reached before the deadline. However, last night, leaders from the parties reached a deal to avoid a government shutdown when funding expires at midnight on Friday.
It is not totally done and dusted, as Trump still needs to sign the deal. But after the fallout from the last shutdown, even he would probably not risk the wrath of the American public. The agreement does not include the $5.7 billion the White House has demanded for a border wall, with the figure set at almost $1.4 billion. It essentially means that 55 miles of new fencing can be constructed, some way below the 215 miles Trump wants, but still far more than beggars belief. Trump still had to say something though and last night, at a rally in El Paso, Texas, he said “Just so you know, we’re building the wall anyway”.
The dollar managed to climb higher against sterling and the euro yesterday to continue its recent run of good form. Today, Federal Reserve chair Jerome Powell is set to deliver a speech, but it is otherwise quiet. Tomorrow we will see the inflation rate for January, which is expected to drop to 2.1% from 2.2% the previous month.
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