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Economy in Brief

FOMC Leaves Interest Rates Unchanged
by Tom Moeller January 27, 2010

The Federal Open Market Committee today left the Federal funds rate in a "range from 0 to 1/4 percent." The Fed funds rate remained unchanged from late-2008 at its lowest level ever. The discount rate also was left unchanged at 0.5%. The action was as expected.

The FOMC statement regarding the economy was upgraded slightly. "Information received since the Federal Open Market Committee met in December suggests that economic activity has continued to strengthen and that the deterioration in the labor market is abating."

Regarding inflation the statement was succinct. "With substantial resource slack continuing to restrain cost pressures and with longer-term inflation expectations stable, inflation is likely to be subdued for some time."

Finally, the Fed left little-changed its prior comments on the improved functioning of financial markets. Moreover, one board member indicated "that economic and financial conditions had changed sufficiently that the expectation of exceptionally low levels of the federal funds rate for an extended period was no longer warranted."

A complete text of the Fed's latest press release can be found here .

The Haver databases USECON, WEEKLY and DAILY contain the figures from the Federal Reserve Board.

  Current Last 2009 2008 2007
Federal Funds Rate, % (Target) 0.00 - 0.25 0.00 - 0.25 0.16 1.93 5.02
Discount Rate, % 0.50 0.50 0.50 2.39 5.86
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