• All officials at the Federal Reserve’s Dec. 13-14 policy meeting agreed the U.S. central bank should slow the pace of its aggressive interest rate increases, allowing them to continue increasing the cost of credit to control inflation but in a gradual way meant to limit the risks to economic growth.
  • The minutes of the meeting, which were released on Wednesday, showed policymakers still focused on controlling the pace of price increases that threatened to run hotter than anticipated, and worried about any “misperception” in financial markets that their commitment to fighting inflation was flagging.
  • But officials also acknowledged they had made “significant progress” over the past year in raising rates enough to bring inflation down. As a result, the central bank now needed to balance its fight against rising prices with the risks of slowing the economy too much and “potentially placing the largest burdens on the most vulnerable groups” through higher-than-necessary unemployment.