Federal Reserve raises key interest rate in first move since 2015

America’s central bank is nudging its benchmark interest rate higher, announcing a move from the current 0.25-0.50 percent to a range of 0.50 and 0.75 percent. The decision emerged from a session of the Federal Open Market Committee Wednesday.

Analysts had widely expected the hike of a quarter of a percentage point, and with a low unemployment rate and signs of growth among workers’ wages, more boosts could follow in 2017. The Federal Reserve said today that its officials expect “only gradual increases in the federal funds rate.”

The rates decision was announced at 2 p.m. ET; Fed Chair Janet Yellen will hold a news conference 30 minutes later. We’ll update this post with details from that event.

 

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