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Fed leaves interest rates unchanged

The US Federal Reserve left interest rates unchanged Wednesday and said it was not likely to change them in the foreseeable future.

The Federal Open Market Committee voted unanimously to keep the federal funds rate, the interest that banks charge each other, at 5.25%. The rate has remained steady since June 2006. The decision kept the prime rate - the lowest interest rate commercial banks charge their best customers, usually large, strong corporations - at 8.25%. An accompanying committee statement said: „Economic growth slowed in the first part of this year and the adjustment in the housing sector is ongoing. Nevertheless, the economy seems likely to expand at a moderate pace over coming quarters.” Inflation remains the Fed`s „predominant policy concern,” the statement said. „Future policy adjustments will depend on the evolution of the outlook for both inflation and economic growth, as implied by incoming information,” the statement said. (