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Fed Leaves Rates Unchanged, Notes Economic Activity Remains Below Pre-Pandemic Levels

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Most Americans are focused on the outcome of the presidential election, although members of the Federal Reserve still announced their latest monetary policy decision on Thursday.

The members of the Fed announced that they decided to keep the target range for the federal funds rate at 0 to 1/4 percent, as widely expected.

The accompanying statement said the Fed expects rates to remain unchanged until labor market conditions have reached levels consistent with the central bank's assessments of maximum employment and inflation has risen to 2 percent and is on track to moderately exceed 2 percent for some time.

The Fed also said it plans to increase its holdings of Treasury securities and agency mortgage-backed securities at least at the current pace to sustain smooth market functioning and help foster accommodative financial conditions.

In their assessment of the economy, the members of the Fed said economic activity and employment have continued to recover but remain well below their levels at the beginning of the year.

Weaker demand and earlier declines in oil prices have been holding down consumer price inflation, the central bank added.

The Fed also said overall financial conditions remain accommodative, in part reflecting policy measures to support the economy and the flow of credit to U.S. households and businesses.

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