Get 40% Off
🚀 AI-picked stocks soar in May. PRFT is +55%—in just 16 days! Don’t miss June’s top picks.Unlock full list

White House says it's monitoring Red Sea attacks; not seeing big impact on holiday products

Published 12/22/2023, 01:44 PM
Updated 12/22/2023, 08:40 PM
© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: Houthi military helicopter flies over the Galaxy Leader cargo ship in the Red Sea in this photo released November 20, 2023. Houthi Military Media/Handout via REUTERS/ File Photo

By Andrea Shalal

WASHINGTON (Reuters) -The White House on Friday said it was closely monitoring Houthi attacks on ships in the Red Sea, but did not expect the situation to have a significant impact on holiday prices or the availability of products.

Lael Brainard, director of the White House National Economic Council, told reporters that the U.S. economy was proving resilient, with inflation having come down faster than even the more optimistic forecasts had indicated, the labor market rebounding, and growth remaining solid.

But she said the administration remained keenly alert to risks, including issues such as Russia's ongoing war in Ukraine and its potential to disrupt grain markets, and the evolving situation in the Red Sea.

"Geostrategic risks remain elevated. We see that also in the Red Sea, where we're closely monitoring and we're working with partners," she said, adding that there was no evidence thus far to suggest an impact on prices or the availability of products.

The Houthi militant group, which controls vast amounts of territory in Yemen after years of war, since last month has fired drones and missiles at international vessels sailing through the Red Sea, attacks that it says respond to Israel's assault on the Gaza Strip.

The White House has repeatedly called for those attacks to stop. On Friday, it said Iran was "deeply involved" in planning operations against commercial vessels in the Red Sea, something Iran denies.

© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: Houthi military helicopter flies over the Galaxy Leader cargo ship in the Red Sea in this photo released November 20, 2023. Houthi Military Media/Handout via REUTERS/ File Photo

Brainard said Biden's national security team was "very focused" on the situation in the Red Sea, given its importance to global shipping, and remained in constant communication with ocean shippers and countries in the region to ensure freedom of navigation and to bolster regional security.

Asked about the potential inflationary impact of the attacks, Brainard said: "Based on the information we have, diversion of vessels from the Suez Canal to the Cape of Good Hope is not anticipated to have a large effect on the availability of products for holiday shopping, but of course we will continue to monitor that."

Latest comments

Risk Disclosure: Trading in financial instruments and/or cryptocurrencies involves high risks including the risk of losing some, or all, of your investment amount, and may not be suitable for all investors. Prices of cryptocurrencies are extremely volatile and may be affected by external factors such as financial, regulatory or political events. Trading on margin increases the financial risks.
Before deciding to trade in financial instrument or cryptocurrencies you should be fully informed of the risks and costs associated with trading the financial markets, carefully consider your investment objectives, level of experience, and risk appetite, and seek professional advice where needed.
Fusion Media would like to remind you that the data contained in this website is not necessarily real-time nor accurate. The data and prices on the website are not necessarily provided by any market or exchange, but may be provided by market makers, and so prices may not be accurate and may differ from the actual price at any given market, meaning prices are indicative and not appropriate for trading purposes. Fusion Media and any provider of the data contained in this website will not accept liability for any loss or damage as a result of your trading, or your reliance on the information contained within this website.
It is prohibited to use, store, reproduce, display, modify, transmit or distribute the data contained in this website without the explicit prior written permission of Fusion Media and/or the data provider. All intellectual property rights are reserved by the providers and/or the exchange providing the data contained in this website.
Fusion Media may be compensated by the advertisers that appear on the website, based on your interaction with the advertisements or advertisers.
© 2007-2024 - Fusion Media Limited. All Rights Reserved.