A large majority of Federal Reserve officials were open to a rate hike in December, according to the minutes of the U.S. central bank's October meeting released on Wednesday. "Most participants" anticipated that the conditions for beginning to raise interest rates "could well be met by the time of the next meeting," the minutes said. Fed officials signaled in their October statement, for the first time, that they would contemplate a rate hike at their next meeting, set for Dec. 15-16. A majority of Fed officials said this didn't mean a rate hike in December was automatic and that it left their options open, but a minority of doves on the committee thought this could be misinterpreted as signaling too strongly the expectation that rates would be increased at the next meeting.
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