Traders keep eyes on 2015 for first Fed rate hike


Traders of short-term U.S. interest-rate futures on Wednesday kept bets that the Federal Reserve will wait to raise rates until at least April 2015, and more likely even longer, after the Fed said it would keep its massive stimulus program in place.

Fed funds futures contracts, tied to the Fed's policy rate target, fell slightly after the announcement.

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Futures prices suggest the Fed will raise rates no earlier than April 2015, giving the probability of an increase in that month about 51 percent, according to CME Group's Fed Watch, which generates probabilities based on the price of Fed funds futures traded at the Chicago Board of Trade.

Traders saw the probability increasing to about 70 percent by July, 2015.

(Reporting by Ann Saphir; Editing by Chizu Nomiyama)