FOMC Minutes: Members Split on April Rate Hike
Fed officials discussed an April rate hike, but some officials argued
against such a move, minutes of the FOMC March 15-16 meeting showed.
“Several participants also argued for proceeding cautiously in reducing policy accommodation because they saw the risks to the U.S. economy stemming from developments abroad as tilted to the downside or because they were concerned that longer-term inflation expectations might be slipping lower, skewing the risks to the outlook for inflation to the downside”, minutes said.
FOMC members agreed that “their ongoing assessments of the data and the implications for the outlook, rather than calendar dates, would determine the timing and pace of future adjustments to the stance of monetary policy”.
Officials expressed a range of views about the likelihood that incoming information would make an adjustment appropriate at the time of their next meeting.
"Several expressed the view that a cautious approach to raising rates would be prudent or noted their concern that raising the target range as soon as April would signal a sense of urgency they did not think appropriate", while some other participants indicated that a hike at next meeting "might well be warranted if the incoming economic data remained consistent with their expectations for moderate growth in output, further strengthening of the labor market, and inflation rising to 2 percent over the medium term."
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