United States unemployment drops down below 3 percent for the first time since 1953. It is according to the economists at Goldman Sachs Group Inc., JPMorgan Chase & Co., Deutsche Bank AG and Moody’s Analytics Inc.
Jan Hatzius, Goldman’s chief economist, said in an email “We have unemployment at 3.25 percent by the end of 2019.” A job market that tight would be a blessing for workers and for President Donald Trump.
But it would presents a problem for monetary about the risk of the economy overheating after Trump and Congress agreed to cut taxes and increase government spending.
The central bank is going to raise interest rates four times each in 2018 and 2019. It is significantly more than Fed officials and investors currently expect. Peter Hooper, chief economist for Deutsche Bank Securities in New York, said there’s even a risk the Fed could end up increasing rates five times this year.
Fed policy makers have penciled in three interest rate increases for this year and about two next, according to the median projection of policy makers released in December. They’re widely expected to carry out the first of those hikes at their March 20-21 meeting, when they’ll also update their future plans and Powell will deliver his first press conference as chairman.
Powell told lawmakers earlier this month that some further strengthening of the labor market “can take place without causing inflation” even though he judged the U.S. is “very close to full employment.” He added, “We don’t want to run too far past the natural rate of unemployment.”