The Federal Reserve could still raise interest rates in September but a move at the last meeting of the year is more likely, experts said Friday (Sept. 2) in the wake of the August jobs report.

“I think this report keeps the Fed on hold this month, and the reason is that it created no urgency for them,” said Dean Maki, chief economist of Point72 Asset management.

MarketWatch reported that the economy adding just 151,000 jobs in August, down from 275,000 in July and 271,000 in June.

“All in, it is not a particularly strong month,” said Brian Bethune, an economics professor at Tufts University. “It is not going to put the Fed’s feet to the fire. My sense is the Fed will wait until December.”

Bethune said the Fed would have to start “batting the markets” if it wanted to pull the trigger in September.

The odds of a September rate hike have dropped to 12% after hovering around 20% before the report. Bethune said the Fed would like to get that closer to 50%. “They don’t want it to be a surprise.”

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