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U.S. Fed chairman says to hold press conference after every policy meeting starting in 2019

U.S. Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell said here on Wednesday that the central bank will hold a press conference after every policy meeting starting in January 2019.

"That will give us more opportunities to explain our actions and to answer your questions," Powell told reporters at a press conference after a two-day policy meeting.

The Fed holds eight policy meetings every year and the chairman currently holds quarterly press conferences during the months of March, June, September, and December.

"I want to point out that having twice as many press conferences does not signal anything about the timing or pace of future interest rate changes. This change is only about improving communications," Powell said.

Powell had previously signaled that he would be open to holding more press conferences so as to better explain the central bank's monetary policy decisions.

The Fed on Wednesday raised short-term interest rates by a quarter of a percentage point, its second rate hike this year and the seventh since late 2015. The central bank also signaled there were two more rate hikes in the second half of this year.

Powell believed that a gradual pace of interest rate hikes remains the appropriate path for the central bank to sustain economic expansion.

"We continued to believe that a gradual approach for increasing the federal funds rate will best promote a sustained expansion of economic activity, strong labor market conditions, and inflation near our symmetric two percent goal," he said.
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