The Federal Reserve is keeping a key interest rate unchanged in light of global pressures that risk slowing the U.S. economy. The Fed left open ended the timing of future rate hikes.
The central bank says the economy has continued to expand at a moderate pace but that global economic developments and financial markets continue to pose risks. Offsetting the threats, the Fed says a range of indicators point to additional strengthening in the job market. It sees some pickup in inflation.
Since raising its benchmark short-term rate from a record low in December, the Fed has held off on raising rates again given market jitters and a sharp slowdown in China.
Most economists think the Fed will raise rates twice this year, most likely beginning in June.