US Federal Reserve vote 9-1 to hike interest rates

If Mr. Trump is watching and considering what the Fed is doing, he might also be coming to understand the role of what is, in principle, an independent US central bank.

By a 9 to 1 vote, Fed officials raised the federal funds rate 0.25 percentage points to a range of 0.75 to 1 percent.

Right now, the Central Bank is expected to raise rates three times this year, but if its actions become more aggressive, it could bring a sharper upswing in mortgage rates. It was the third quarter-point rate hike since the Fed began raising interest rates in December 2015.

An East Coast blizzard hasn't stopped the Federal Reserve from its two-day meeting. In 2016, the Fed lifted rates once.

The Fed is increasingly confident that United States growth is quickening and sustainable.

"Rising inflation will predominantly dictate the next monetary policy decision, but another short-term rate hike should be expected by the end of the summer", said Lawrence Yun, National Association of Realtors chief economist.

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Yellen says the committee tracks core inflation, which excludes energy and food prices, and which has not changed much in recent months. By making it slightly more expensive for households and businesses to borrow, the Fed hopes to slow the economy modestly and prevent it from overheating, which can result in higher inflation.

As per Chicago Tribune, the Fed credits "a strengthening job market and rising prices [that] had moved it closer to its targets for employment and inflation".

Borrowers with private loans - whether debts that originated with private banks, or federal student loans they refinanced with private lenders - should check to see if they have a variable interest rate and if so, they should expect to see their rates rise in the next one to three months, Kantrowitz said. The rates at which banks can borrow money trickles out to consumer loans as well, and if the bank's fees go up, they'll raise their rates as well.

"The simple message is the economy is doing well", Yellen said in a press conference. "We have plenty of time to see what happens". Meanwhile, they project the US economy will grow 2.1% this year, unchanged from the Fed's earlier forecasts published in December.

While there was "huge policy uncertainty" in the Trump era, Bie predicted it would probably wait until the end of this year that stimuli would start to take effect.

Regarding the possibility of interest rates hike in Asia, Gareth Leather, a senior Asia economist with Capital Economics, pointed out in his report that: "There is little reason to think that [Asian] central banks will need to follow the Fed's lead".


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