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Following the conclusion of a two-day policy meeting, the US Federal Reserve (Fed) announced at 3am on Thursday, Taiwan time, its decision to increase the target of the federal funds rate by 25 basis points — 0.25 percent — to a range of 0.50 percent to 0.75 percent, a move that markets predicted a 100 percent probability of. The decision was passed on a unanimous vote.
The Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC), which is responsible for interest rate policy decisions, made the decision to increase the benchmark interest rate by 25 basis points, citing actual and predicted labor market conditions and inflation as reasons for the decision.
The FOMC statement says that, according to recent information, “the labor market has continued to strengthen, and … economic activity has been expanding at a moderate pace since mid-year,” and that “household spending has been rising moderately but business fixed investment has remained soft.”
The Fed said that US inflation expectations have increased significantly, and inflation will continue to approach the 2 percent target, with the unemployment rate continuing to fall.
This is the second time the Fed has increased the rate since last December, this increase coming a year after that move, and the second rate hike in almost 10 years. All eyes were on how the Fed officials would view the US’ economic outlook and the speed of interest rate hikes for 2017 in what was the first Fed policy committee meeting since US president-elect Donald Trump’s election victory.
Source article: http://www.taipeitimes.com/News/lang/archives/2016/12/20/2003661533
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