“When is the next Fed meeting?” is a question that hasn’t weighed this heavily on nervous investors’ minds in probably four decades.
Which is fair enough, really. The worst inflation to hit the U.S. economy in 40 years appears to have peaked in 2022, and yet the Federal Reserve remains committed to its most aggressive campaign of interest rate hikes since the late Carter and early Reagan administrations.
Who can forget that rising interest rates helped clobber equity markets last year? And, yes, higher rates are indeed having their intended effect of slowing down economic activity.
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True, gross domestic product or GDP grew by more than economists forecast in the fourth quarter, but economic growth slowed sequentially from Q3. The GDP outlook for 2023 is unquestionably downbeat, too, with some forecasters putting the probability of recession at 60% or greater.
Then there’s the labor market. Although signs of slowing job creation keep multiplying, the jobs outlook remains fairly healthy. The labor market is a sticking point for the Fed, and it’s still far too tight for the central bank’s comfort.
The bottom line? The Federal Reserve has made it plain and clear that it will continue to raise interest rates to try to slow the economy and cool inflation.
Between the Fed’s policy stance, and a backdrop of falling share prices and rising recession odds, no wonder investors are obsessed with the question of “when is the next Fed meeting?”
The Next Fed Meeting: What to Expect
For the record, the central bank’s rate-setting committee is called the Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC).
As you can see from the FOMC meeting calendar (opens in new tab), the committee meets eight times a year. These meetings last two days, and conclude with the FOMC releasing its policy decision at 2 p.m. Eastern time. The Fed chief then holds a press conference at 2:30 p.m. (Pro tip: as closely scrutinized as the Fed statement might be, market participants are usually even more keen on what the Fed chair has to say in the press conference.)
The next Fed meeting starts on January 31 and will wrap up with a policy statement on February 1 at 2 p.m. Eastern.
As for the next Fed meeting, the market expects Fed Chief Jerome Powell and the rest of the FOMC to raise the benchmark federal funds rate by 25 basis (opens in new tab) points, or 0.25%, to a target range of 4.50% to 4.75% – up from the current target of 4.25% to 4.50%.
That would represent a slowdown from the Fed’s December hike of 0.50%. Prior to the December meeting, the FOMC raised short-term rates by 75 basis points for four consecutive meetings.
As for those still wondering “when is the next Fed meeting?” after that, have a look at the schedule, courtesy of the FOMC, below:
2023 Fed Meetings Calendar
- January 31 to February 1
- March 21 to 22
- May 2 to 3
- June 13 to 14
- July 25 to 26
- September 19 to 20
- October 31 to November 1
- December 12 to 13
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