In its first meeting since October’s market turmoil and this week’s midterm elections, the Federal Reserve voted to maintain the current level of its benchmark interest rate.
The policymaking Federal Open Market Committee, as expected, unanimously approved keeping the federal funds rate in a range of 2 percent to 2.25 percent. Markets figured the central bank would hold the line at this meeting and probably approve a quarter-point hike in December, which would be the fourth of the year.
There were a few tweaks to the way policymakers are viewing economic conditions.
On the upside, the committee noted that the unemployment rate “has declined” since the September meeting. The Labor Department last week reported that the headline jobless level was at 3.7 percent, the lowest since December 1969.
However, the statement noted that the “growth of business fixed investment has moderated from its rapid pace earlier in the year.”