U.S. Federal Reserve holds interest rates steady
In a widely expected move,... the U.S. Federal Reserve has left rates unchanged.
Releasing a statement after its latest policy meeting,... the Fed said inflation is climbing after years of being stuck below its two-percent target level.
Lee Seung-jae reports.
Wrapping up a two-day meeting,... the Federal Open Market Committee held U.S. interest rates steady on Wednesday,... expressing confidence that a recent rise in inflation would be sustained,... putting it on track to raise borrowing costs in June.
The Fed's decision to leave its benchmark overnight lending rate in a target range of between one-point-five percent and one-point-seven-five-percent was unanimous.
The Fed said inflation had "moved close" to its target,... and the "price stability" part of its dual mandate from Congress had almost reached its two-percent target.
Experts say the two-percent target is symmetric,... meaning it would be equally problematic if inflation lingers too far above or below that level.
The Fed's comments on the U.S. labor market were also of interest.
It downplayed a recent slowdown in economic and job growth,... saying the activity had been expanding at a moderate rate and job gains, on average, had been strong in recent months.
Last month,... the Bank of Korea left its key interest rate unchanged,... deciding to hold the rate at one-and-a-half percent.
The South Korean economy is on track to grow three percent this year,... but inflation is projected to be one-point-six percent,... slightly below the central bank's previous forecast.
Back in the U.S.,... the Federal Reserve currently forecasts two more rate hikes this year,... while an increasing number of policymakers see three as possible.
All eyes turn to the Fed's next meeting in June,... when rates are set to go up.