Federal Reserve Governor Jerome Powell said on Friday that he wanted to see signs that the U.S. economy was tightening up before before interest rates could be raised.
While acknowledging that employment in the United States had rebounded, Powell highlighted “significant” slack, referring to unemployed or underutilised workers.
The Fed hopes to end its stimulus programme for the U.S. economy by the end of the year, clearing the way for it to eventually raise interest rates.
“I’m looking for some sign the economy is getting tight before we can start thinking about raising rates,” Powell said at an event in London.
Powell added there was a “significant amount of slack in the labour market” in the United States at present.
In brief prepared remarks, Powell said the Fed’s evolving statements about the future path for rates have played an important role in shaping market expectations about U.S. monetary policy.