The U.S. Federal Reserve could raise interest rates two, three or four times this year, said Chicago Fed President Charles Evans, though his Minneapolis colleague Neel Kashkari argued that there was no need to rush.
“We do not have a high-inflation threat right around the corner,” Kashkari said during an interview on Bloomberg Television Monday, adding that the lack of price pressure affords the Fed patience in raising rates. “I’d be very surprised if core inflation reaches 2 percent this year.”
The Minneapolis Fed chief cast the sole dissent when the Federal Open Market Committee voted on March 15 to raise rates. Kashkari’s stance establishes him as a voice of resistance as the Fed gets moving: as of last week’s meeting, officials forecast two more rate increases this year, assuming their economic projections for low unemployment and near-2 percent inflation are met.
“The data are basically moving sideways, so I’m asking,