WASHINGTON – Financial conditions are much tighter now than they were when the Federal Reserve hiked rates in December, and if they persist into March, the U.S. central bank will have to take that into account, said New York Fed President William Dudley on Wednesday. "One thing I think we can say with more confidence is that financial conditions are considerably tighter than they were at the time of the December meeting," Dudley said in an interview with Market News International. He said he thought the Fed's statement after its last meeting was an acknowledgment that "things have happened in financial markets and in the flow of economic data that may be in the process of altering the outlook for growth and the risk to the outlook for growth going forward." He added it was still "a little soon to draw any firm conclusions from what we've seen."
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