The US Federal Reserve has reinforced its inflation fight by raising its key interest rate for the seventh time this year and signaling more hikes to come. The central bank boosted its benchmark rate a half-point to a range of 4.25 percent to 4.5 percent, its highest level in 15 years. The Fed made clear, in a statement and a news conference by Chair Jerome Powell, that it thinks sharply higher rates are still needed to fully tame the worst inflation bout to strike the economy in four decades. The latest move will further increase the costs of many consumer and business loans and the risk of a recession.
The policymakers forecast that their key short-term rate will reach a range of 5 percent to 5.25 percent by the end of 2023.