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FOMC leaves policy rate unchanged within 1.5% - 1.75% range in January as expected

  • Fed keeps federal funds target range unchanged at 1.5% - 1.75%.
  • US Dollar Index edges higher modestly, stays above 98.10.
  • Chairman Jerome Powell will deliver his remarks on the outlook at 19:30 GMT.

Following its 2-day meeting, the Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) on Wednesday announced that it left the benchmark interest rate unchanged within the target range of 1.5% - 1.75% as widely expected but raised the interest on excess reserves rate by 10 basis points to 1.6%. Jerome Powell, Chair of the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System, is scheduled to deliver his comments on the monetary policy outlook in a press conference at 19:30 GMT. 

With the initial reaction, the US Dollar Index, which tracks the greenback's performance against a basket of six major currencies, inched higher and was last up 0.18% on the day at 98.15.

Key takeaways from the statement

"Will continue to buy treasury bills at least into the second quarter"

"Will continue conducting term and overnight repo operations at least through April."

"Will conduct overnight reverse repos at an offering rate of 1.50%."

"Job gains solid, inflation still below target."

"Household spending has been rising at a moderate pace, business fixed investment and exports remain weak."

"Will continue to monitor incoming data, including global developments and muted inflation pressures."

"Current stance of monetary policy appropriate to support economic expansion, strong labor market and inflation returning to its symmetric 2% objective."

"Vote in favor of policy was unanimous."

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