The Federal Reserve’s policy-making Federal Open Market Committee convened for its first meeting of the year and, in a unanimous vote, opted not to raise rates
“In view of realized and expected labor market conditions and inflation, the Committee decided to maintain the target range for the federal funds rate at one-half to three-quarter percent,” the Fed said in a press statement. “The stance of monetary policy remains accommodative, thereby supporting some further strengthening in labor market conditions and a return to two percent inflation.”
The central bank also refused to commit to additional rate hikes in the near future.
“In light of the current shortfall of inflation from two percent, the Committee will carefully monitor actual and expected progress toward its inflation goal,” the Fed statement continued. “The Committee expects that economic conditions will evolve in a manner that will warrant only gradual increases in the federal funds rate; the federal funds rate is likely to remain, for some time, below levels that are expected to prevail in the longer run. However, the actual path of the federal funds rate will depend on the economic outlook as informed by incoming data.”