Fed Holds Steady in October

The Federal Reserve Open Market Committee (FOMC) decided against raising the federal funds in October. In a statement released post-meeting, the Committee again stated that the U.S. economy was expanding at a “moderate pace,” but noted that the pace of job gains slowed and that net exports have been “soft.” Inflation also continued to run below long-run objectives – in some part due to declines in energy prices and in prices for non-energy imports.

The FOMC continued to see the outlook for economic activity and the labor market as “nearly balanced,” and expects inflation to rise gradually toward 2 percent over the medium term.

Of the voting members of the Committee, all but Richmond Federal Reserve President Jeffrey Lacker voted to hold the target rate between 0 and 25 basis points. The committee did leave the door open for a December rate hike however. “In determining whether it will be appropriate to raise the target range at its next meeting, the Committee will assess progress – both realized and expected – toward its objectives of maximum employment and 2 percent inflation.”

Read the FOMC statement.