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Charles Evans says "open-minded" about the correct Fed rate level




Charles Evans, president and CEO of the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago, told CNBC Monday that he was "open-minded" when asked about the right level of interest rates in the United States, but hinted that more cuts could be needed if financial headwinds increases.

Evans, known for his unclear views of the central bank, was still preoccupied with the basics of the United States despite the headwinds facing the economy.

"We have reduced the target for federal funds by 50 basis points, and I think It helped us move into a welcoming position, more than where we were absolutely sure, but it can be a moving target if headwinds increase and we may need to do more, "he told CNBC's Annette Weisbach in Frankfurt.

that he was "definitely open-minded" about what the right level would be for the federal fund interest rate target to have the "appropriate monetary policy."

"At the moment, I think appropriate monetary policy is somewhat below the neutral prices so we offer accommodation," he said.

Charles Evans, President of the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago

Daniel Acker | Bloomberg | Getty Images

"Over the past six months, we have had several challenges in bringing inflation to 2%, there is more uncertainty, trade negotiations have been challenging, European and Chinese growth has slowed, so it seems more attentive stance is a good one for the United States, "he added.

"What we have already done may be sufficient, I am open to suggestions that we may need more. At the moment I will look at data," he said, specifying inflation and labor market data as important metrics.

Evans' comments come after the US central bank approved an interest rate cut a quarter earlier in September, but gave few indications of whether further reductions are ahead with individual policy makers sharing what they should do next.

In July, Evans said a "couple" interest rate cut was needed to get inflation close to the bank's 2% target. The Fed has since cut its main interest rate in July and September – corresponding to a reduction of 50 basis points in total this year. The annual inflation rate is currently 1.7%.

On the US economy and headwinds, Evans added that the country "may be able to ride the uncertainties out.

" There may be more fragility and if it is a shock it is completely unexpected and something we have not thought of before, which can lead to something not as positive, "he told CNBC.



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