Fed minutes: Growing risks make rate hike path less clear
WASHINGTON (AP) — Federal Reserve officials expressed increasing worries when they met last month, as they grappled with volatile stock markets, trade tensions and uncertain global growth. The threats, they said, made the future path of interest rate hikes “less clear.”
According to minutes of the Fed’s December gathering, officials believed that with inflation still muted, the central bank could afford to be “patient” about future rate hikes. While the Fed did approve a fourth rate increase for the year, the minutes show that a “few” Fed officials argued against hiking rates at the meeting.
The Fed trimmed its projection of possible rate hikes in 2019 from three down to two. But many private economists think the central bank may end up raising rates just once this year if the economy slows significantly.