The minutes said “many participants” at the Fed’s meeting in March noted they would have preferred a 50 basis point increase to the federal funds rate in light of high inflation.
The rate hike came after the Fed announced the wind-down of its pandemic stimulus late last year.
The central bankers are also cautious about any further price increases due to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. “By leading to higher energy and food prices, weighing on consumer sentiment, and contributing to tighter financial conditions, the invasion also negatively affected the growth outlook,” the minutes said.
Other central bank officials have also said they would be open to raising interest rates faster since the initial increase last month, including Philadelphia Fed President Patrick Harker.
The Fed said it is also getting ready to shrink down its massive balance sheet, which got bloated during the pandemic stimulus program. The Fed could reduce its Treasury and mortgage-backed security holdings by as much as $95 billion per month starting in May, a faster pace than in previous tightening cycles.
Bond rates continued to surge with the expectation that rates would rise quickly. The 10-year Treasury yield rose to 2.62%, hitting a three-year high.
–CNN Business’ Dave Goldman and Nicole Goodkind contributed to this report.
Quoted from Various Sources
Published for: The Bloggers Briefing