Fed Chair Notes Ukraine Event as Uncertain and Sees Possibility of Rate Hikes

Central Bank Chairman Jerome Powell on Wednesday noted that Ukraine even is highly uncertain but sees that rate hikes are still coming.

Powell sees a series of quarter-percentage-point hikes are coming and also expressed the possibility of moving even more aggressively if higher inflation persists.

Federal Reserve chief acknowledged the tremendous hardship in Ukraine.

Powell said, “The implications for the U.S. economy are highly uncertain, and we will be monitoring the situation closely.”

Powell added, “The near-term effects on the U.S. economy of the invasion of Ukraine, the ongoing war, the sanctions, and of events to come, remain highly uncertain. Making appropriate monetary policy in this environment requires a recognition that the economy evolves in unexpected ways. We will need to be nimble in responding to incoming data and the evolving outlook.”

He expressed that the central bank wants to get inflation under control but it will proceed carefully considering the implications on the economy of the Ukraine war.

Powell said, “We will use our policy tools as appropriate to prevent higher inflation from becoming entrenched while promoting a sustainable expansion and a strong labor market. We have phased out our net asset purchases. With inflation well above 2 percent and a strong labor market, we expect it will be appropriate to raise the target range for the federal funds rate at our meeting later this month.”