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Fed Chair Jerome Powell Discounts Recession Risks, Implication For Crypto

federal reserve rate hike

The United States Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell has reiterated that the U.S. recession is not an immediate worry and the apex bank is not in a hurry to cut interest rates


US Recession, Inflation and Current Data


During an event that was held in San Francisco, Powell acknowledged that the fresh inflation data that was earlier released is in alignment with the Fed’s expectation. At the same time, he talked about how inappropriate it would be to lower rates until there’s a strong believe that inflation is on track toward the projected 2% goal. For Powell, the latest readings are not as negatively outstanding as what policymakers saw in 2023.


“The fact that the US economy is growing at such a solid pace, the fact that the labor market is still very, very strong, gives us the chance to just be a little more confident about inflation coming down before we take the important step of cutting rates,” Powell said on Friday.


Noteworthy, this comes only a few days after the Fed preferred inflation gauge PCE was released


The report is believed to be in line with market estimates, which was detailed in the latest PCE report by the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis. The PCE inflation in the U.S., which does not include volatile food and energy costs, slowed to 0.3% month-over-month in February after it had hit a 0.4% rise in January.


According to the released update, the annual PCE rate rose to 2.5% from 2.4%, which was the lowest since February 2021. It is still above the Fed’s target of 2%. Overall, the fears of US recession were discounted, removing the urgency to slash the interest rate as stakeholders expected.


Investors to Stick With More Promising Asset Class


With the inflation data readings, the Fed Reserve has kept interest rates steady in the 5.25% to 5.50% range while they assess US recession, economic growth and inflation. 


The Fed officials have predicted a decrease in interest rates by three-quarters of a percentage point by the end of 2024. This projection aligns with their commitment to reaching the central bank’s 2% inflation target.


Lower interest rates would ordinarily devalue government securities including some traditional asset class. Consequently, this triggers the attractiveness of assets like cryptocurrencies including Bitcoin (BTC), Ethereum (ETH) and other altcoins. 


With the Fed deciding to delay its decision to cut interest rates, it is very likely that investors will rather stick with those traditional assets especially as spot Bitcoin ETF is driving demand and market valuations to new heights.


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