Fed's Powell said the case for a rate hike has "clearly strengthened,"
Fed's Powell said the case for a rate hike has "clearly strengthened," in his prepared remarks. Powell is one more FOMC member to state such a case, though this is the firmest. The market has already priced in a 25 bp increase for the December 14 policy meeting, so there won't be any significant impact on the markets. The Fed is "reasonably close" to meeting its goals. He looks for GDP growth of about 2% to persist for a while, with inflation continuing to move toward 2%. The economy still has some slack, so the FOMC's patience in boosting rates has paid dividends, he added. However, moving too slowly could mean more abrupt action in the future. The main risks to growth at this point come from abroad.