Updates of FOMC meeting today

 

The Federal Reserve raised its key short-term interest rate by a quarter percentage point Wednesday, pushing ahead with its aggressive campaign to tame inflation despite financial turmoil following Silicon Valley Bank’s collapse.

But acknowledging the crisis will constrain bank lending and weaken the economy and inflation, Fed officials are now forecasting just one more rate hike this year and even that move is uncertain, 

The Fed is anticipating another quarter-point increase to a peak range of 5% to 5.25%, in line with its December estimate and lower than the level markets expected before SVB’s meltdown, according to the officials' median estimate.

"You can think of (the crisis) as being the equivalent of a rate hike and perhaps more than that," Fed Chair Jerome Powell said at a news conference.

He added that "it's too soon to tell" how much the stricter bank lending will hobble the economy and tame inflation but said it could be more significant than expected and the Fed "may have less work to do."

FOMC

The Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) is the monetary policymaking arm of the Federal Reserve System, which is responsible for the conduct of monetary policy in the United States. The FOMC was established in 1935, as part of the Banking Act of 1935, which also created the Federal Reserve System.

The FOMC is composed of twelve voting members, consisting of the seven members of the Federal Reserve Board, the president of the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, and four of the remaining eleven Federal Reserve Bank presidents on a rotating basis.

The FOMC meets eight times a year to assess the state of the economy and to make decisions about monetary policy. The committee sets the federal funds rate, which is the interest rate at which banks lend money to each other overnight, and which is a key determinant of other short-term interest rates, such as those on consumer loans, mortgages, and corporate bonds.

Over the years, the FOMC has played an important role in shaping the U.S. economy. For example, during the Great Depression of the 1930s, the FOMC pursued a policy of monetary contraction, which many economists believe aggravated the severity of the economic downturn. In the 1980s, the FOMC pursued a policy of tight monetary policy to combat inflation, which helped to bring inflation under control.

Today, the FOMC continues to play an important role in the U.S. economy, and its decisions are closely watched by financial markets and policymakers around the world.

 

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