Fed governor supports continuing 50 basis-point rate hikes

Christopher Waller says he is prepared to do more if data suggests inflation is 'stubbornly high'.

Fed governor supports continuing 50 basis-point rate hikes

US Federal Reserve Governor Christopher Waller voiced support on Monday for tightening the central bank's monetary policy by an additional 50 basis points for the next several meetings.

"In particular, I am not taking 50 basis-point hikes off the table until I see inflation coming down closer to our 2% target," he said in a speech at the Institute for Monetary and Financial Stability (IMFS) at the Goethe University Frankfurt in Germany.

"And, by the end of this year, I support having the policy rate at a level above neutral so that it is reducing demand for products and labor, bringing it more in line with supply and thus helping rein in inflation," he added.

The Fed has started its monetary tightening by raising its key benchmark interest rates 25 basis points in March, and another 50 basis points earlier this month, in order to tame high inflation.

Consumer inflation in the US climbed to its highest level in more than 40 years when it gained an annual 8.5% in March.

"Inflation this high affects everyone but is especially painful for lower- and middle-income households that spend a large share of their income on shelter, groceries, gasoline, and other necessities," Waller said.

"If the data suggest that inflation is stubbornly high, I am prepared to do more," he added.