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Fed raises 2018 outlook for US economy

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The Federal Reserve raised its outlook on U.S. economic growth on Wednesday.

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The median real GDP forecast rose to 2.8 percent, up from 2.7 percent, for this year. There were no changes for 2019 and 2020, and the longer run median forecast remained 1.8 percent.

Economic activity has been rising at a “solid” rate, the Fed’s statement said, marking an upgrade from “moderate” in the previous statement. The central bank raised its benchmark short-term interest rate a quarter of a percentage point on Wednesday and indicated two more hikes will likely come this year.

Policymakers also lowered their expectations for the unemployment rate. The median projection for this year fell to 3.6 percent, down from 3.8 percent. For 2019 and 2020, the median expectation for the unemployment rate declined to 3.5 percent, from 3.6 percent.

Inflation expectations rose to 2.1 percent for this year through 2020.

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