In her meeting with the Senate Banking Committee on Tuesday, Federal Reserve Chairwoman Janet Yellen said that it would be awhile before the central bank’s Open Market Committee makes a move on interest rates. Per CNBC:
The central bank chief said caution would be used as the jobs picture improves but inflation remains muted. Her comments were received in a generally positive manner from the market, which pushed stocks further into record territory on hopes that the Fed would not move too aggressively in boosting its short-term interest rate target off near-zero levels.
"The FOMC's assessment that it can be patient in beginning to normalize policy means that the Committee considers it unlikely that economic conditions will warrant an increase in the target range for the federal funds rate for at least the next couple of FOMC meetings," Yellen said in prepared remarks before the Senate Banking Committee.Sponsor Content
The most recent December Federal Open Market Committee minutes said, “Labor market conditions have improved further, with strong job gains and a lower unemployment rate. On balance, a range of labor market indicators suggests that underutilization of labor resources continues to diminish. Household spending is rising moderately; recent declines in energy prices have boosted household purchasing power.”
In addition, the committee chose to reaffirm its view that the current 0% to .25% target range for the federal funds rate remains appropriate.