Federal Reserve Signals Pause in Interest Rate Hikes

January 30, 2019 at 5:35 PM

The Federal Reserve agreed unanimously today to leave overnight lending rates unchanged and indicates it is “patient” about further increases.

The decision reversed the central bank’s position in mid-December, when the Fed indicated that it would probably raise rates twice this year. The current rate is a range of 2.25%-2.50%. The Fed implemented four quarter-point increases in 2018.

Fed Chairman Jerome Powell explains that the justification for additional increases “has decreased somewhat” because of weakening consumer sentiment and slowing growth for the global economy.

Still, he says the Fed expects a “solid pace” of growth for the American economy. He also says the bank’s primary goal is to sustain economic expansion.