Monday 20 February 2017

We should welcome US interest rate increase

Published 17/12/2015 | 02:30

Janet Yellen, chair of the US Federal Reserve. Photo: Andrew Harrer/Bloomberg
Janet Yellen, chair of the US Federal Reserve. Photo: Andrew Harrer/Bloomberg

One may be free to choose but not free from the consequences of the choice; yesterday, US Federal Reserve chairperson Janet Yellen made her choice.

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It's seldom that a single decision can have such impact on so many. But as Ms Yellen explained, the interest rate increase she announced marks the end of an extraordinary seven-year period. In this time, the world has weathered the worst financial crisis and recession since the Great Depression.

After such a prolonged period of rock-bottom US interest rates, as well as three rounds of quantitative easing, it is finally believed that the US economy is sufficiently back on track to make the move. Employment levels have improved, even if they are not back at pre-crash levels.

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