Fedspeak in Focus as Yellen Lays out Future Rate Hikes

Fed Chair Janet Yellen gave a closely watched speech to the Executives Club of Chicago last Friday, which she used as a platform to lay out her economic outlook prior to the central bank???s March 14-15 Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) meeting.

Yellen stated, ???We currently judge that it will be appropriate to gradually increase the federal funds rate if the economic data continue to come in about as we expect. The process of scaling back accommodation has so far proceeded at a slower pace than most FOMC participants anticipated in 2014.”

???Looking ahead, we continue to expect the evolution of the economy to warrant further gradual increases in the target range for the federal funds rate. However, given how close we are to meeting our statutory goals, and in the absence of new developments that might materially worsen the economic outlook, the process of scaling back accommodation likely will not be as slow as it was in 2015 and 2016.???

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