Fed’s Kashkari wants to see ‘many more months’ of positive inflation data before a rate cut

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Fed’s Kashkari wants to see ‘many more months’ of positive inflation data before a rate cut

No need to hurry into rate cuts, Fed's Kashkari says: 'We should take our time and get it right'

LONDON — The Federal Reserve should wait for significant progress on inflation before cutting interest rates, Minneapolis Federal Reserve President Neel Kashkari told CNBC Tuesday.

Asked what conditions were needed for the Fed to cut rates once or twice this year, Kashkari said: “Many more months of positive inflation data, I think, to give me confidence that it’s appropriate to dial back.”

He said the central bank could potentially even hike rates if inflation fails to come down further. “I don’t think we should rule anything out at this point,” Kashkari added.

U.S. inflation rose by a slightly less-than-expected 0.3% in April, providing some relief for policymakers. Still, it remained up 3.4% on the year.

Kashkari said he was confident the Fed would ultimately reach its 2% inflation target, but added: “I’m not seeing the need to hurry and do rate cuts, I think we should take our time and get it right.”

He noted that the central bank may consider raising its target rate in the future, but said it was not appropriate to “move the goal posts” at this stage.

It comes after Kashkari said earlier this month that the Fed may need to hold interest rates steady for “an extended period” — possibly all year — in order to reach its target.

Divergence has emerged among the major central banks on the outlook for interest rates, with the Fed — usually first to move — growing more hawkish amid still-high inflation.

The European Central Bank is now expected to lower rates before the Fed, with two key figures from the ECB throwing their weight behind a June cut on Monday.

The Bank of England is also broadly expected to cut rates this summer.

Watch CNBC's full interview with Fed President Neel Kashkari

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