Federal Reserve officials voted to hold interest rates steady Wednesday (May 1), as a lack of inflation pressure outweighed an economy that otherwise is growing strongly.
CNBC reported that the central bank held its benchmark rate in a target between 2.25% and 2.5%, meeting market expectations though perhaps disappointing President Donald Trump, who earlier this week urged the Fed to cut the rate by 1 percentage point.
Trump has cited the lack of inflation as a key reason for a rate cut and said in two tweets Tuesday that economic growth would be much stronger if the Fed would ease the reins on policy.
Instead, the policymaking Federal Open Market Committee voted unanimously to hold the current range. The committee did, however, make a technical adjustment aimed at keeping the funds rate closer to the midpoint of the target range.
Interest paid on excess reserves that banks keep at the Fed will now be set at 2.35%, or
.05 percentage points lower than before. Prior to two similar adjustments last year, the Fed had been raising the funds rate and reserves rate in tandem, with the latter acting as a cap for the benchmark rate.
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