Federal Reserve chairwoman Janet Yellen indicated Friday that an increase in the federal interest rate will likely come later this month, assuming there are no unanticipated economic developments. "At our meeting later this month, the committee will evaluate whether employment and inflation are continuing to evolve in line with our expectations, in which case a further adjustment of the federal funds rate would likely be appropriate," Yellen said.
Economists have sensed that the economy is nearing the end of its rebound period after the 2008 financial crisis, meaning continued low interest rates could push growth into unsustainable territory. Yellen also noted the economy's "remarkable resilience" against overseas turbulence.
The Federal Open Market Committee's meetings are scheduled for March 14 and 15, and Yellen's speech Friday was the last opportunity to publicly signal the Fed's intentions before the meeting.