Fed's Poole says risk of recession unclear

William Poole, the president of the St Louis Federal Reserve, said on Wednesday that it was still too early to tell whether the housing sector's problems would push the US economy into recession.

"The current financial turmoil will take awhile to play itself out. The fundamentals of our economy remain strong, however, and 2008 looks to be a year of rising growth," Poole said. "Economic forecasters expect slow expansion in the first half of the year and a quickening pace in the second half."

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