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MNI: Weaker Growth To Damp Fed’s Hawkish Resolve-Ex -Officials

(MNI) Washington

The Fed's attempts to play-catch up with rates may increase the chance of a policy error.

Softening economic growth and higher unemployment later this year could shock the Federal Reserve into slowing or pausing an aggressive string of rate hikes expected in coming meetings, former U.S. central bank officials told MNI.

Fed officials who were only recently signaling a quarter-point rate hike at every other meeting now appear to be aiming to frontload multiple 50-basis-point increases before reassessing the situation, with ex-officials noting that the rapid hawkish shift has generated a tightening of financial conditions that is already starting to be felt.

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Softening economic growth and higher unemployment later this year could shock the Federal Reserve into slowing or pausing an aggressive string of rate hikes expected in coming meetings, former U.S. central bank officials told MNI.

Fed officials who were only recently signaling a quarter-point rate hike at every other meeting now appear to be aiming to frontload multiple 50-basis-point increases before reassessing the situation, with ex-officials noting that the rapid hawkish shift has generated a tightening of financial conditions that is already starting to be felt.

Keep reading...Show less