Fed’s Fischer says 4 rate hikes in 2016 ‘in the ballpark’

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Federal Reserve Vice Chairman Stanley Fischer said that the median of policy maker forecasts predicting four quarter-percentage point interest-rate increases in 2016 was “in the ballpark” though it wasn’t possible to know the exact number now.

“The reason we meet eight times a year is because things happen, and as they happen you want to adjust your policy,” Fischer said in an interview Wednesday on CNBC.

Fischer’s remarks come three weeks after the Fed raised interest rates for the first time in almost a decade. Policy makers said at the time they would continue to monitor real and expected progress on inflation, which remains below their 2 percent target, as they contemplate when to raise again.

Minutes of the Dec. 15-16 Federal Open Market Committee meeting are scheduled to be released at 2 p.m. in Washington.

Christopher Condon

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