The Fed: Fed’s Bostic says half-point rate hike isn’t his preferred policy path


Atlanta Fed President Raphael Bostic on Monday said he was not advocating for a 50-basis-point rate hike in March. Over the weekend, Bostic’s discussion of a half-point hike with the Financial Times garnered a lot of market attention. In an interview with Yahoo Finance, Bostic clarified that a half-point hike “is not my preferred setting of policy action at the next meeting.” Bostic said he expects three quarter-point rate hikes this year. The discussion about a more aggressive hike was meant to show that he is keeping his options open, he added. “I’m going to let the data and the evidence really guide us,” Bostic said. The Atlanta Fed president said he thought the Fed could start to shrink its balance sheet after the central bank has hiked rates a “few” times. “Let’s get a few of our interest rate moves in order to see how the economy is responding,” he said. Once the reduction has started, Bostic said he thought Fed could shrink its portfolio at a faster pace than in 2017-2019.

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