Fed minutes show officials grappled with global weakness

Staff Writer
Columbus CEO

WASHINGTON (AP) — Federal Reserve policymakers grappled at their last meeting over how to respond to a slowing global economy. They ultimately decided to leave a key policy rate unchanged despite arguments by some officials that delaying further rate hikes could be risky.

Minutes of the Fed's March 15-16 meeting showed that several participants argued for "proceeding cautiously" with future rate hikes because of global risks such as weaker growth in China. But the minutes said a couple of officials believed a rate hike at the March meeting would be "appropriate."

The Fed voted 9-1 to leave its key rate unchanged. Fed Chair Janet Yellen last week signaled her concerns about raising rates too quickly given headwinds facing the U.S. economy. Most economists forecast no rate hike in April.