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Bostic: Fed needs to act “soon” to be sure inflation expectations stay controlled

President and Chief Executive Officer of the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta Raphael W. Bostic speaks at a European Financial Forum event in Dublin, Ireland February 13, 2019. REUTERS/Clodagh Kilcoyne

WASHINGTON, Feb 1 (Reuters) – U.S. inflation risks being pushed to a permanently higher level if the Federal Reserve does not get the current bout of price increases under control, Atlanta Fed president Raphael Bostic said on Tuesday.

“The mostly pandemic-induced episodic price pressures could grind on long enough to fundamentally alter expectations,” and drive actual inflation higher, Bostic said in an essay published by the Atlanta Fed. While expectations have not risen to critical levels yet he said there was “real danger” if businesses and households begin to act as if higher annual inflation was here to stay, and that warranted higher interest rates.

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Reporting by Howard Schneider

Our Standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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