Fed lifts rates
Federal Reserve officials, meeting for the first time under Chairman Jerome Powell, raised the benchmark lending rate a quarter-point and forecast a steeper path of hikes in 2019 and 2020, citing an improving economic outlook. Policy makers continued to project a total of three increases this year.
“The economic outlook has strengthened in recent months,” the policy-setting Federal Open Market Committee said in a statement Wednesday. Officials repeated previous language that they anticipate “further gradual adjustments in the stance of monetary policy.”