Fed boosts interest rate, predicts two more hikes this year

Fed boosts interest rate, predicts two more hikes this year

Fed boosts interest rate, predicts two more hikes this year

The Federal Reserve said it had chose to raise the rate by 0.25% to a target range of 1.5% to 1.75%.

Central bankers admitted to being befuddled by the absence of inflation a year ago despite the economic recovery and strong job market, but Wednesday's statement repeated the view that 12-month inflation is expected to move up to the Fed's 2% goal "over the medium term". The Fed asserted that part of the deviation from 2 percent reflects unusual price declines that occurred almost a year ago.

Additionally, based on the updated economic projections, Fed expects inflation to be at 1.9% this year, near about its target of 2%.

The Fed is expected to lift its benchmark overnight lending rate by a quarter of a percentage point to a range of 1.50 percent to 1.75 percent at the end of a two-day meeting on Wednesday.

In the briefing with reporters, Powell hued to the FOMC plan for gradual rate increases.

President Donald Trump recently announced steep tariffs on aluminum and steel and is expected to take more tough action against Chinese goods this week, but Powell said officials did not specify whether rising trade frictions could impact growth or inflation. They said they expect to raise interest rates three times next year, an increase from the two increases in 2019 that they forecast in December.

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Gold steadied on Thursday below a two-week high hit in the previous session as the dollar slid after the U.S.

He added, "i$3 n this case, the selling pressure in gold and silver occurred because traders reckoned a USA rate hike would be bearish for the metals". Stocks recovered briefly and then slid into the close, a reflection of the market's confusion over Fed policy.

It said: "Inflation on a 12-month basis is expected to move up in coming months and to stabilise around the committee's 2% objective over the medium term".

Central bankers see growth picking up this year and next, with GDP gaining 2.7 percent this year and 2.4 percent next year. The challenge for the central bank is to balance low unemployment with the potential for higher inflation. "The household spending and business investment have reached moderate levels against strong fourth quarter data", adds the statement. Other social media companies in the US also finished the day lower on concerns that the government might enact new laws affecting their businesses. Higher borrowing costs could squeeze both markets and the wider economy.

ENERGY: Benchmark U.S. crude shed 7 cents to $65.10 per barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. "I would imagine the bar is higher for him in the shorter term because he is not a trained economist", unlike Janet Yellen and other predecessors. The unemployment rate remained at a 17-year low of 4.1 percent. The London Interbank Offered Rate, which is the rate at which global banks lend to each other and serves as a benchmark for lending rates, has risen for more than 30 consecutive sessions and is at its highest since the financial crisis.

"In our view, however, something will eventually have to give, and the Fed's confidence in their ability to stay on the rate path they set may soon be tested by either the economy or the market".

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