Fed holds rates steady, on course for Dec hike

Mint ST - - NEWS - Feed­back@livemint.com WASH­ING­TON leslie.d@livemint.com MUM­BAI

The Fed­eral Re­serve left in­ter­est rates un­changed and stayed on course to hike in De­cem­ber de­spite re­cent jit­ters in fi­nan­cial mar­kets and a crit­i­cal pres­i­dent.

The US cen­tral bank said “eco­nomic ac­tiv­ity has been ris­ing at a strong rate” and job gains “have been strong,” ac­knowl­edg­ing a drop in the un­em­ploy­ment rate, while re­peat­ing its out­look for “fur­ther grad­ual” rate in­creases in its state­ment Thurs­day fol­low­ing a two-day meet­ing in Wash­ing­ton.

Risks to the out­look ap­pear “roughly bal­anced,” the Fed­eral Open Mar­ket Com­mit­tee said, leav­ing that lan­guage un­changed from the prior meet­ing in late Septem­ber. In­fla­tion ex­pec­ta­tions, which have slipped slightly in re­cent weeks ac­cord­ing to some mea­sures, were de­scribed as “lit­tle changed, on bal­ance,” the same as in the last state­ment.

“Ab­sent any­thing new be­tween now and the last meet­ing of the year, they’ll con­tinue on with an­other 25 ba­sis point in­crease” in De­cem­ber, said James Kahn, an eco­nom­ics pro­fes­sor at Yeshiva Univer­sity and a for­mer vice pres­i­dent at the New York Fed. “The lan­guage is de­signed to try to not look

If you were to watch news on the Chi­nese gov­ern­men­trun Xin­hua News Agency, you would, in all like­li­hood, en­counter the world’s first ar­ti­fi­cial in­tel­li­gence (Ai)-pow­ered news an­chor.

De­vel­oped jointly by the news agency and Chi­nese search en­gine com­pany So­gou.com, “he” is of­fi­cially a mem­ber of Xin­hua’s re­port­ing team.

His voice has been mod­elled on that of a real an­chor work­ing for the agency, which also ex­plains the fa­cial ex­pres­sions and ac­tions that imi­tate a real per­son.

As with any ma­chine learn­ing tech­nique, the AI an­chor learns con­tin­u­ously from live broad­cast­ing videos and can read texts as nat­u­rally as a pro- fes­sional news an­chor.

He made his de­but at the on­go­ing fifth World In­ter­net Con­fer­ence in east China’s Zhe­jiang Prov­ince, ac­cord­ing to an 8 No­vem­ber post on xin­huanet.com (bit.ly/2zdeuhg).

The AI an­chor can work through the day on its of­fi­cial web­site and var­i­ous so­cial me­dia plat­forms, re­duc­ing news pro­duc­tion costs and im­prov­ing ef­fi­ciency, ac­cord­ing to the same re­port.

Ai-pow­ered vir­tual as­sis­tants, such as Ap­ple’s Siri, Google As­sis­tant, Sam­sung’s Bixby and Mi­crosoft’s Cor­tana, are as in­tel­li­gent as Xin­hua’s AI an­chor, if not more, but they do not have a hu­man face.

Even IBM’S AI sys­tem, Project De­bater (bit.ly/2yq8bjy), which en­gaged in the first-ever live, pub­lic de­bate with hu­mans on 18 June at an event at the IBM Wat­son West site in San Fran­cisco—de­liv­er­ing a four-minute open­ing state­ment, a four­minute re­but­tal, and a two-

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from India

© PressReader. All rights reserved.