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Fed's Harker expects at least three rate hikes this year

[NEW YORK] There is a strong case to "get on with" raising US interest rates, a top Federal Reserve official said on Tuesday, adding he would prefer to tighten policy at least three times this year.

Philadelphia Fed President Patrick Harker said that, at a Fed policy meeting last week, he predicted in published forecasts there would be more than two rate hikes in the remainder of 2016. "There is a strong case" to continue raising rates, he said.

The published forecasts last week showed that a majority of nine of the Fed's 17 policymakers recommended two rate hikes through the rest of the year, while three officials recommended three hikes and four recommended four hikes. Only one official recommended one hike in 2016.


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