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FOMC Decision Review: Rates unchanged as central bank raises inflation and interest rate forecasts

By Kyle Rodda

10:55, 17 June 2024

The FOMC left Federal Funds Rate unchanged at a target range of 5.25 to 5.50%.

FOMC raises forecasts for the PCE Index and Federal Funds Rate

Given that no charge to the Federal Funds Rate was all but certain going into this FOMC decision, market participants focused on the Summary of Economic Projections. The central bank lifted its forecast for both headline and core PCE in 2024 and 2025 - the projection for core PCE this year moved from 2.6% to 2.8%. As a result, the Fed shifted its median dot in its dot plots to imply just one rate cut from this year, down from three in the March SEP, although a large minority forecasted two cuts. The adjustment in inflation forecasts and the Federal Funds Rate came despite no change in GDP forecasts and the unemployment rate for 2024. The central bank revised its projections for the unemployment rate slightly higher for 2025 and 2026.

Table 1. Economic projections of Federal Reserve Board members and Federal Reserve Bank presidents, under their individual assumptions of projected appropriate monetary policy, June 2024

(Source: US Federal Reserve)


20,336.40 Price
+0.570% 1D Chg, %
Long position overnight fee -0.0263%
Short position overnight fee 0.0040%
Overnight fee time 21:00 (UTC)
Spread 7.0


2,411.42 Price
-0.180% 1D Chg, %
Long position overnight fee -0.0191%
Short position overnight fee 0.0109%
Overnight fee time 21:00 (UTC)
Spread 0.60


0.48 Price
+6.100% 1D Chg, %
Long position overnight fee -0.0753%
Short position overnight fee 0.0069%
Overnight fee time 21:00 (UTC)
Spread 0.01168


3,134.11 Price
+0.480% 1D Chg, %
Long position overnight fee -0.0616%
Short position overnight fee 0.0137%
Overnight fee time 21:00 (UTC)
Spread 6.00

How much did CPI data factor into the FOMC’s forecasts?

Although the changes to the Summary of Economic Projections were mostly priced into the market before the FOMC decision, the forecasts raised some questions amongst market participants. The most pressing was whether the CPI data released earlier in the day, which revealed a larger-than-expected drop in core inflation to 3.4%, had been reflected in the FOMC’s forecasts. Fed Chair Powell strongly suggested that it largely was, stating the SEP “does reflect the data we got… to the extent you reflect it in one day”. The next question was how is it possible the Fed could start lowering interest rates from here if growth continues above its long-run average this year, the unemployment doesn’t budge, and inflation remains practically exactly where it is now. Arguably, Chair Powell’s answer did little to clarify the dynamic, ultimately falling back on the view that the Fed believes current policy is restrictive. He also said the revised forecasts were in part due to base effects from low readings last year.

CPI data fuelled risk-appetite, FOMC waters it down

The softer-than-expected CPI report fuelled risk appetite before the FOMC watered down the moves. Stocks closed higher for the day but finished off the session’s highs. Yields pared back a double-digit drop. The US Dollar recovered from its intraday lows. As of the US close, futures imply roughly one and three-quarter cuts before the end of the year, slightly higher than yesterday, but lower than the two cuts that the market had flirted with after the release of the inflation figures. Given the “dot-plots” pointed to an almost even split between members who forecast one cut and two cuts, the pricing effectively splits the difference between the two.

(Source: Trading View)

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The difference between trading assets and CFDs
The main difference between CFD trading and trading assets, such as commodities and stocks, is that you don’t own the underlying asset when you trade on a CFD.
You can still benefit if the market moves in your favour, or make a loss if it moves against you. However, with traditional trading you enter a contract to exchange the legal ownership of the individual shares or the commodities for money, and you own this until you sell it again.
CFDs are leveraged products, which means that you only need to deposit a percentage of the full value of the CFD trade in order to open a position. But with traditional trading, you buy the assets for the full amount. In the UK, there is no stamp duty on CFD trading, but there is when you buy stocks, for example.
CFDs attract overnight costs to hold the trades (unless you use 1-1 leverage), which makes them more suited to short-term trading opportunities. Stocks and commodities are more normally bought and held for longer. You might also pay a broker commission or fees when buying and selling assets direct and you’d need somewhere to store them safely.
Capital Com is an execution-only service provider. The material provided in this article is for information purposes only and should not be understood as investment advice. Any opinion that may be provided on this page does not constitute a recommendation by Capital Com or its agents and has not been prepared in accordance with the legal requirements designed to promote investment research independence. While the information in this communication, or on which this communication is based, has been obtained from sources that believes to be reliable and accurate, it has not undergone independent verification. No representation or warranty, whether expressed or implied, is made as to the accuracy or completeness of any information obtained from third parties. If you rely on the information on this page, then you do so entirely at your own risk.

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