Fed Holds On Rates, But Not For Long

What to Expect and What to Trade in the Fed Rate Decision

The Fed also indicated that inflation has firmed, coming closer to the Fed's two percent target. Investors had all but ruled out another increase at this week's meeting. Ahead of the statement, some investors were nervous it might sound more hawkish on policy tightening after recent concerns about rising inflation.

In view of realized and expected labor market conditions and inflation, the Committee chose to maintain the target range for the federal funds rate at 1-1/2 to 1-3/4 percent.

The dollar eased 0.1 percent to 109.68 yen, inching away from a three-month peak of 110.05 yen set on Wednesday.

"I think a June rate hike is a done deal unless something dramatically changes between now and June".

"We see a rising risk of a recession in 2019", said economist Paul Ashworth of Capital Economics.

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The Fed cites the lowest unemployment level in 18 years as one reason it feels confident about lifting interest rates at least one more time this year.

But data released on Monday showed price gains are now effectively at the Fed's target. So-called core prices, which exclude the food and energy sectors, rose 1.9% in March, up from 1.6% in February.

Fed policymakers had anticipated the rise and have stressed that their target is not a ceiling and that they will tolerate increases above it without being immediately concerned.

It wasn't clear to what extent the Fed's statement contributed to the pullback, though the prospect of an accelerated pace of rate increases could eventually weigh down a stock market that has always been supported by ultra-low rates. The Fed's decision to leave its benchmark overnight lending rate in a target range of between one.five percent and one.seven-five-percent was unanimous.

This would appear to signal a policy victory for the Trump administration because the expansion of business investment was a key goal of the Trump administration's tax cuts.

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The economy is now in its second-longest expansion since World War Two. Mortgage rates climbed to their highest level in over four years last week with the 30-year fixed-rate mortgage increasing for the third consecutive week to 4.58 percent.

Trade relations between the United States and China have already been strained as Trump has weighed imposing tariffs on up to $150 billion of Chinese imports.

The company posted quarterly revenue of 61.1 billion USA dollars, an increase of 16 percent from the year-ago quarter, and quarterly earnings per diluted share of 2.73 dollars, up 30 percent.

The US Federal Reserve left its base rate unchanged last night amid expectations that it will rise next month. The Reserve Bank's next interest rate review is on May 10, the first for new governor Adrian Orr, when he is expected to keep intact its projection for rates to remain low for the foreseeable future.

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