Fed Points Toward Continued Easing

02/17/21

The Federal Open Market Committee does not plan to tighten monetary policy any time soon, according to the minutes of its latest meeting, released this afternoon.

"A few participants stated that it would be important to stay vigilant to ensure that the banking system remained strong and resilient," with "some participants" highlighting rising equity values "that might have been affected by retail investors trading through electronic platforms," the FOMC minutes stated.

Still, "participants observed that the economy was far from achieving the Committee's broad-based and inclusive goal of maximum employment and that even with a brisk pace of improvement in the labor market, achieving this goal would take some time," the minutes added.

The Fed did not make large scale changes to its policy statement at its last meeting in January, and did not issue new economic forecasts. The news points toward a low rate environment being likely  for the foreseeable future, absent an unexpected steepening in the consumer price index or other inflation metrics.