Fed's Powell Sees First Rate Increase Later This Year

Federal Reserve Governor Jerome Powell said Wednesday that he expects economic conditions will support a rise in interest rates later this year. In a speech to the Council on Foreign Relations in New York, Powell said the exact timing of the move is less important than the expected path of rate hikes and he supports moving fairly gradually. Powell said the Fed should "look for a little more proof than usual" that the economy is running out of slack. This could help reverse at least part of the damage to the economy from the Great Recession, he said. The Fed governor said he was concerned that overly accommodative policy could lead to "frothy" financial conditions but said he does not see "a troubling buildup of these risks today." Powell said he expects continued progress in the labor market to continue despite the slowdown of job creation in March. He said he expects inflation to rebound once the transient shocks of the low oil price and the strong dollar pass.

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