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The Federal Reserve will do all it can to bring about low unemployment but that alone would not be enough to trigger interest rate hikes, Fed Vice Chair Richard Clarida said Wednesday, adding that "additional support from monetary -- and likely fiscal -- policy will be needed" to support the recovery.
A "low unemployment rate, in and of itself, will not be sufficient to trigger a tightening of monetary policy absent any evidence from other indicators that inflation is at risk of moving above mandate-consistent levels," he said in prepared remarks before the Institute of International Finance, echoing comments from San Francisco Fed chief Mary Daly overnight.
Economic data since May has been "surprisingly strong," Clarida said, but "it will take some time, perhaps another year," for the GDP level to recover to its 2019 peak.
"It will likely take even longer than that for the unemployment rate to return to a level consistent with our maximum-employment mandate," adding that his baseline outlook is close to the Fed's September median projections which had core PCE inflation hitting 2.0% in 2023.