Hawkish Fed Presidents Repeat Calls for FOMC to Raise Rates

Two Federal Reserve Bank Presidents argued loudly for a December rate hike during an event in Washington D.C. on Thursday.
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With Wall Street rattled by the prospects of higher interest rates, two Federal Reserve Bank Presidents argued loudly for a December rate hike during an event called 'Rethinking Monetary Policy,' held at the Cato Institute in Washington D.C. on Thursday. James Bullard, the President of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, said its time for liftoff. ‘I have been an advocate of ending the FOMC’s near­ zero nominal interest rate policy. My case is straightforward,' said Bullard during a speech. Bullard went onto to say that zero interest rate policy, or ZIRP, ­ is potentially dangerous for the economy. “During the past six years I have warned along with many others that the Committee’s ZIRP has put the US economy at considerable risk of future inflation.’ Jeffrey Lacker, the President of the Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond, also spoke at the event. Lacker has been the lone dissenter during the last two FOMC meetings, in which it was decided to hold rates steady. At a news conference following their speeches, both Bullard and Lacker emphasized the pace of future rate increases will be more important than when the first rate hike occurs, which is widely expected to be at the FOMC's next meeting in mid-December. TheStreet's Rhonda Schaffler has details from Washington.

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