Traders raise chances of quarter-of-a-percentage-point Fed rate hikes in February and March after December jobs report


Fed funds futures traders see a better-than-not likelihood that the Federal Reserve will lift rates by a smaller-than-usual 25 basis points each at its next two meetings, after December’s jobs report pointed to slowing wage growth and easing inflation pressures. The chance of a quarter-percentage-point hike next month rose to as much as 70% on Friday, from 63% a day ago, according to the CME FedWatch Tool. The likelihood of a similar move in March was seen at 62% at one point, up from 59% on Thursday. Both moves would bring the main policy rate to between 4.75% and 5%. Treasury yields were little changed to lower after the jobs report.

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