Federal Reserve Raises Benchmark Interest Rate
It’s a rising tide. Satisfied with economic growth and inflation approaching 2 percent, the Fed announced a quarter-point rate hike yesterday to a range of 0.5 to 0.75 percent — a historically low figure, but it will still increase borrowing rates. It’s only the second increase since the 2008 crisis, though three more incremental hikes are planned for 2017. The news fired up bond markets, with U.S. short-term debt hitting its highest yields since 2009, while shares for banks — sure to profit from higher interest — boosted European stocks.