The head of the Atlanta Federal Reserve on Monday said he expects the U.S. central bank to raise interest rates "sometime this year," but he offered little clue on whether the Fed will wait until after the turmoil in global stock markets eases up. In a speech in Berkeley, Cal., Dennis Lockhart did not mention the possibility of a September rate hike, as he had done in prior speeches. Lockhart predicted the U.S. economy would continue to experience "moderate growth," though he acknowledged that a stronger dollar, falling oil prices and the recent Chinese currency devaluation have made it harder to predict. Lockhart also said he doesn't think widespread underfunding of U.S. pensions poses a systemic risk to the nation's financial system. Nor does he think financial stress on U.S. states represents a big danger, either. Until just a few days ago, most Fed watchers believed the bank was preparing to raise interest rates at a mid-September meeting of top officials. But now some think the Fed could hold off until global markets settle down, especially given a divide among top policymakers.
Copyright © 2015 MarketWatch, Inc.
Continue Reading Below