The Fed has left its benchmark short-term rate at a record low near zero since December 2008. It's said it plans to keep it there at least as long as unemployment exceeds 6.5 percent. Last week, two Fed economists produced papers suggesting that the 6.5 percent threshold should drop a¿¿ to 5.5 percent or less. Doing so would signal to the public that the Fed would likely keep its benchmark rate low even longer than many assume.Some economists now predict that at its March meeting, the Fed will say it's reducing its threshold for any increase in short-term rates to an unemployment rate of 6 percent.
As Yellen Faces Senators, Here's What To Watch For
Check Out Our Best Services for Investors
- $2.5+ million portfolio
- Large-cap and dividend focus
- Intraday trade alerts from Cramer
Access the tool that DOMINATES the Russell 2000 and the S&P 500.
- Buy, hold, or sell recommendations for over 4,300 stocks
- Unlimited research reports on your favorite stocks
- A custom stock screener
- Model portfolio
- Stocks trading below $10
- Intraday trade alerts