Friday, April 29, 2016

Federal Reserve opts to keep interest rates at current levels at latest meeting

Amid a moribund economy and reduced levels of consumer spending, the Fed on again opted not to raise interest rates.

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Summary:  Information received since the Federal Open Market Committee met in March indicates that labor market conditions have improved further even as growth in economic activity appears to have slowed.

Growth in household spending has moderated, although households' real income has risen at a solid rate and consumer sentiment remains high. Since the beginning of the year, the housing sector has improved further but business fixed investment and net exports have been soft.

A range of recent indicators, including strong job gains, points to additional strengthening of the labor market. Inflation has continued to run below the Committee's 2 percent longer-run objective, partly reflecting earlier declines in energy prices and falling prices of non-energy imports.

Market-based measures of inflation compensation remain low; survey-based measures of longer-term inflation expectations are little changed, on balance, in recent months.

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