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September 01, 2020 1:28pm
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Fed pauses interest rate hikes for first time in 15 months

The Federal Reserve paused its 15-month interest rate hike campaign on Wednesday after government data pointed to a sharp slowdown in inflation last month.

The Federal Reserve on Wednesday held interest rates steady for the first time in 15 months, pausing its aggressive tightening campaign to assess how the economy is faring in the face of higher borrowing costs. 

"Holding the target range steady at this meeting allows the Committee to assess additional information and its implications for monetary policy," the Federal Open Market Committee said in its post-meeting statement. 

Policymakers have raised interest rates sharply over the past year, approving 10 straight rate hikes in hopes of crushing inflation and cooling the economy. In the span of just one year, interest rates surged from near-zero to a range of 5% to 5.25% – the fastest pace of tightening since the 1980s.

The decision came one day after the Labor Department reported the consumer price index – a key measure of inflation – rose 4% in May from the previous year, the smallest increase in more than two years. Still, that remains about twice the Fed's target 2% rate.

This is a developing story. Please check back for updates.

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