The Federal Reserve concluded its July 30-Aug. 1 board meeting with no new steps in monetary policy. The central bank says that June economic data indicated a deceleration of economic activity in the first half of 2012.
“Growth in employment has been slow in recent months, and the unemployment rate remains elevated. Business fixed investment has continued to advance. Household spending has been rising at a somewhat slower pace than earlier in the year. Despite some further signs of improvement, the housing sector remains depressed.”
The Fed will maintain interest rates at 0 to 0.25 percent and repeats its projection that rates will stay “exceptionally low” at least through late 2014.