>> Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell sending out a signal Wednesday. The Fed is almost done raising rates for the time being. His speech before the Economic Club of New York setting off a buying spree on Wall Street. The Dow Jones Industrials closing up more than 600 points.
Inflation is near our 2% target. And the economy is growing at an annual rate of about 3%, well above most estimates of its longer running trend. Interest rates are still low by historical standards and they remain just below the range of estimates of that level that would be neutral for the economy.
That is neither speeding up nor slowing down growth. The phrase quote, just below. Offering a big hint the Fed doesn't see interest rates going much further beyond the current target range of two to two and a quarter percent. That message might go over well at the White House, one day after Trump told the Washington Post he's, quote, not even a little bit happy with Powell, for raising rates too fast.
Investors have been worried that the Fed would keep on pushing rates higher, even as the economy slows a bit, housing and auto sales hard as hit as rate hit higher. But Powell reassured Wall Street Wednesday that the Fed is not in a rush to raise rates and is mindful of the risks to the economy.
>> Under uncertainty of this kind, you be careful. And I think that's what we've been doing with monetary policy for some time, we've been moving gradually in a way. It's a way of keeping those risks at bay.>> Powell says he is paying, quote, very close attention to economic data for any blow back from President Trump's trade war or negative effects from a slowing global economy, other things that have roiled markets lately.
But for now, Wall Street is still expecting a rate hike at the Fed meeting in December.