Federal Reserve Meeting Calendar and Fed News – The Epoch Times

The Federal Reserve has been aggressively moving to raise interest rates this year in an effort to cool off red-hot inflation that has seen the cost of living across the United States soar.
Prior to March of this year, the central bank, whose duties include maintaining a stable monetary and financial system while maximizing employment, had not increased interest rates since 2018.
However, a string of events, such as the COVID-19 pandemic and subsequent pandemic-related stimulus, the supply-chain crisis, and the impact of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, has sent inflation to 40-year-highs and, as a result, American households are feeling the strain.
This in turn has prompted the Fed to take aggressive actions to tackle inflation this year, despite policymakers initially dismissing inflation as “transitory.”
The move marks a significant departure from years prior, in which the Fed maintained a near-zero percent interest rate policy, and has been, as such, met with both support and opposition from Republican and Democratic lawmakers as well as other experts.
Raising interest rates can slow inflation by making borrowing more expensive, thereby curbing demand for goods and services and eventually bringing prices back down.
However, raising rates also increases the costs of debt for Americans, including credit card debt, mortgages, and automobile financing, among others, meaning households are having to fork out more at a time when they are already struggling with the increasing cost of everything from food and rent to gasoline.
According to a November report from The Heritage Foundation, prices have outpaced wage growth this year, resulting in the average family losing $6,100 in real annual income, while higher interest rates have cost them another $1,300 annually.
Annual inflation in the United States inched down to 7.7 percent in October from 8.2 percent in September, according to data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) released this month. However, economists are still anticipating another interest-rate hike when the the policy-making arm of the Federal Reserve, the Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC), meets next month.
The 1913 Federal Reserve Act legislation grants the Federal Reserve responsibility for setting monetary policy across the United States.
As part of this, the FOMC typically holds eight meetings per year, when they discuss and review the outlook for the economy, and the current financial conditions, and determine the appropriate monetary policy to take.
The 12-member committee within the Federal Reserve System is made up of seven members of the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System, along with the president of the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, as well as four of the remaining 11 Reserve Bank presidents.
The term monetary policy generally refers to the actions taken by the central bank to control or influence the overall demand and supply of money, and the cost of money and credit, in order to promote economic growth and price stability.
So far this year, there have been seven FOMC meetings.
The first meeting of the FOMC this year took place on Jan 25–26, followed by a second on Mar. 15–16, a third on May 3–4, a fourth on June 14–15, a fifth on July 26–27, a sixth on Sept. 20–21, and a seventh on Nov. 1–2. The committee will meet for the last time this year.
At November’s meeting, the committee voted unanimously to initiate another 75 basis-point hike, to a target range of 3.75–4.00 percent, marking the sixth rate increase this year and the fourth consecutive 75-point increase in 2022.
The committee is scheduled to meet again on December 13–14 for its final meeting of 2022, when policymakers are widely expected to increase rates yet again, although by how much is not yet clear and depends largely on inflation levels and employment data.
Many economists anticipate between a 0.50 or 0.75 percentage-point hike in December as rates are expected to remain higher for some time until inflation is bought back down to the central bank’s inflation target of 2 percent.
According to the CME FedWatch Tool, most investors think the FOMC will approve a smaller half-point rate hike in the final month of this year.
At the last FOMC meeting in November, Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell stated that it is “very premature” for market experts to expect the central bank to stop raising interest rates in an effort to control soaring inflation as it continues to plague the U.S. economy.
“There is significant uncertainty around that level of interest rates,” Powell said in reference to the Fed’s 2 percent target. “Even so, we still have some ways to go, and incoming data since our last meeting suggest that the ultimate level of interest rates will be higher than previously expected. Our decisions will depend on the totality of incoming data and their implications for the outlook for economic activity and inflation.”
Overall, the central bank itself expects interest rates to peak at 4.5 percent to 4.75 percent in 2023, while market analysts, including Goldman Sachs economists, expect the Fed will raise rates even higher next year, to a range of 4.75–5.0 percent by March. Analysts at BNP Paribas predict an even higher rate of 5.25 percent as well as a recession in the second quarter of 2023
However, others are more optimistic that the central bank will stop raising rates in early 2023 as inflation falls back closer to 2 percent, or else risk pushing the economy into a disastrous recession.
Ultimately, though, the central bank is unlikely to stop raising interest rates until it sees serious signs of inflation slowing down to a more healthy level and reaching its goal of 2 percent.
In addition, the Fed will be keeping a close eye on the labor market, as a gradually slowing job market could help bring down inflation and allow the central bank to achieve a soft landing while simultaneously avoiding a full-blown recession.


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