Senate Likely Not to Drop ACA Taxes and Fed Likely to Raise Rates
June 14, 2017
The Senate is considering not cutting all taxes associated with Obamacare. The Interior Department is also considering delaying implementation on a rule meant to cut methane emissions. It is also becoming more clear that the Federal Reserve will raise rates and that the slight drop in consumer spending earlier in the year was just temporary.
- Senators are considering keeping in place some ACA taxes for longer than the House-passed bill would as they seek to draft healthcare legislation that can pass their chamber with a simple majority. Delaying the repeal or keeping more of the ACA taxes would be the easiest fix, but it risks creating a backlash and substantial pushback could imperil the bill’s prospects. About 45 conservative groups and activists said in a letter that it “would be a mistake” for a Senate bill to not include the tax repeals that were a part of the bill passed by the House last month. [The Hill]
- The Interior Department is preparing to delay implementation of a rule limiting methane waste at oil and natural gas drilling sites. In a Federal Register notice, Interior’s Bureau of Land Management said it would look to postpone compliance dates for several sections of the Obama-era rule, which aims to reduce leaks of methane, a powerful greenhouse gas, at drilling sites on federal land. [The Hill]
Economic Indicators & News
- The Federal Reserve is likely to raise short-term interest rates by a quarter percentage point. Officials also will release new projections for the economy and interest rates, and could announce their plan for shrinking the Fed’s portfolio of Treasury and mortgage bonds. [WSJ]
- Sales at U.S. retailers declined broadly in May as Americans reduced car purchases and tightened spending overall. Retail sales—reflecting consumer spending at stores, restaurants and websites—fell 0.3% in May from a month earlier, which marked the steepest drop since January 2016. Economists said May’s decline was likely a blip and that they expect consumers to step up spending in coming months. [WSJ]