Stocks are slumping on Wall Street as markets assess the Federal Reserve’s move to fight inflation. The economy is a big concern for Americans and many say the country is heading in the wrong direction according to recent polling.
The Fed raised its benchmark interest rate by a half-percentage point Wednesday, as the U.S. struggles with rising costs and the worst inflation in 40 years.
President Joe Biden on Wednesday highlighted new figures showing the government’s red ink will grow less than expected this year and the national debt will shrink this quarter. Biden has tried to counter criticism of his economic leadership amid growing dismay over the economy going into midterm elections that will decide control of Congress.
Supporters of former President Donald Trump who attended a “Save America” rally in Nebraska said the economy is a top concern heading into the midterms.
“I’m a businessman myself, I have several businesses and one of my businesses is pressure cleaning,” rally attendee Adrian Robinson said. “And so when it comes to gas prices and things like that it’s really hurting me.”
Higher oil and gas prices have been contributing to the uncertainties as investors try to assess how inflation will ultimately impact businesses, consumer activity and overall economic growth.
“With inflation, everyone’s really tight with their wallets and money needs to be circulating through the economy,” Robinson said. “You know that’s what makes the economy strong.”
The Associated Press contributed to this report.