WASHINGTON (AP) — The Federal Reserve believes that downside risks to the U.S. economy have lessened with the easing of trade tensions and better prospects for global growth but officials note a concern that possible spillovers from a deadly virus in China represent a new threat.
In its semi-annual monetary policy report released Friday, the Fed did not signal any imminent changes in its benchmark interest rate, which it cut three times last year to the current historically low range of 1.5% to 1.75%.
The Fed said after quarter-point rate cuts at the July, September and October meetings it has viewed the present level of interest rates to be “appropriate to support sustained expansion of economic activity” and a strong labor market and inflation rising to the Fed’s 2% target.
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