Most Federal Reserve Officials Back Slower Rate Rises Going Forward
A “substantial majority” of Federal Reserve officials support slowing down the pace of interest rate rises soon,
even as some warned that monetary policy would need to be tightened more than expected next year, according to an account of their most recent meeting. Policymakers prepare for ‘downshift’ to 0.5 percentage point increase but warn of more pain to come.
Minutes from the November meeting, at which the Fed raised its benchmark rate by 0.75 percentage points for the fourth time in a row, suggested officials are committed to ploughing ahead with their campaign to stamp out elevated inflation.
However, the account also signaled that officials are prepared to start raising rates in smaller increments while they assess the economic effect of the most aggressive tightening campaign in decades. “A slower pace in these circumstances would better allow the committee to assess progress toward its goals of maximum employment and price stability,” according to the minutes.
The minutes, released on Wednesday, November 23, also showed some Fed officials believe they will have to squeeze the economy more than they initially expected because inflation had shown “little sign thus far of abating” — even if they get there with smaller rate rises. A few also argued it could be “advantageous” to wait to slow the pace of rises until the policy rate was “more clearly in restrictive territory” and that there were clearer signals inflation was slowing.
Western governments have agreed to cap the price of Russia’s oil exports
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The U.S. Federal Communications Commission (FCC) on Friday banned 5 Chinese firms from selling communications equipment in the U.S., citing the catch-all excuse of “national security” a move Chinese experts warned will only hurt the global value chain and will definitely backfire.