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US Federal Reserve holds interest rates near zero

Investors had been unsure about the exact end date of the Federal Reserve's stimulus efforts

The US Federal Reserve on Thursday announced that it will hold short-term interest rates near zero, in a widely expected decision that comes as the country remains in a state of uncertainty over the presidential election.

“Economic activity and employment have continued to recover but remain well below their levels at the beginning of the year,” the Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC), which decides on rates increases, said in a statement.
The FOMC added that financial conditions “remain accommodative” with credit flow to households and businesses remaining positive.

The Federal Reserve’s decision keeps interest rates between zero and 0.25 per cent, where they have been since the coronavirus pandemic upended the US economy in March.

US gross domestic product grew at a record 33.1 per cent in the third quarter after a severe slump earlier in the year sparked by the crisis. Unemployment remains high at 7.9 per cent.