Central bank increases interest rate for the 11th time since March 2022
The Federal Reserve Bank increased interest rates another quarter point today. This is the 11th interest rate increase since March 2022, and puts the benchmark at its highest level since 2001.
The increase takes the benchmark target rate to 5.25%-5.5%.
Investors and economists looking for signs of whether there will be more rate hikes did not find any new clues in the announcement.
“The Committee will continue to assess additional information and its implications for monetary policy,” the statement from the Fed said. All public statement focus on a data-driven approach and not a set schedule. In late June, Chairman Jerome Powell said he thinks inflation is too high. Today’s hike received unanimous approval from the voting committee members.
Some data point to a cooling economy, with the consumer price index rising 3% year over year in June compared to more than 9% last year. The Fed’s preferred measure, the personal consumption expenditures price index, rose 3.8% for May. While all the data points are well below the worst levels seen recently, all are still above the 2% inflation rate preferred by the Fed.