IMF supports U.S. Fed’s ‘patient’ halt to rate hikes

March 21, 2019

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The International Monetary Fund supports the U.S. Federal Reserve’s decision to halt its campaign to raise interest rates as a prudent move amid economic uncertainty, IMF spokesman Gerry Rice said on Thursday.

“Given the range of global uncertainties facing the U.S. economy, we support the Fed’s decision to be patient in determining future changes to the Federal Funds rate,” Rice told a regular biweekly news conference. “The Federal Reserve’s continued adherence to the principles of data dependence and clear communication, we believe, will help to minimize any market disruptions and spillovers from its policy decisions.”

The U.S. Federal Reserve on Wednesday brought its three-year drive to tighten monetary policy to an abrupt end, abandoning projections for any interest rate hikes this year amid signs of an economic slowdown, and said it would halt the steady decline of its balance sheet in September.

(Reporting by David Lawder; Editing by Nick Zieminski)

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