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US Federal Reserve Raises Interest Rates for First Time in Nearly 10 Years
The US Federal Reserve hiked interest rates for the first time in nearly 10 years. In a widely expected move, Fed Chairperson Janet Yellen raised rates by 25 basis points from a record low near zero per cent. Strong economic growth and improved hiring sentiments in the US likely played a major role in the rate hike, analysts say. Unemployment rate in the US is at a seven-year low of 5 per cent.
Experts say they will closely track how the Fed fulfils its other mandate, which is keeping prices stable. Global stock and currency markets have been jittery in the run-up to the Fed's liftoff. Emerging markets have seen an exodus of funds, sending stocks lower and weakening currencies in countries such as India. The BSE Sensex hit a three-month low earlier this week, while the rupee slumped to a 25-month low beyond 67 per dollar.