Fed Takes Rate Policy "Meeting by Meeting": Official

The U.S. Federal Reserve is taking a meeting-by-meeting approach to setting interest rates and for now is not committed to a set course of action ahead, Vice Chairman Richard Clarida told reporters on Friday.

"We’re not on a preset course," said Clarida.

The central bank official spoke two days after the policymaking Federal Open Market Committee cut its benchmark interest rate by a quarter point to a target range of 1.75% to 2%. It was the second reduction of the year and came after the Fed had hiked rates nine times, the most recent coming in December.

This week’s meeting was notable for the amount of dissents on the rate vote. Three members cast "no" votes, with two wanting the central bank to hold the line and one, St. Louis President James Bullard, calling for an even more aggressive 50-basis-point cut.

The post-meeting statement again noted worries over a global economic slowdown and low inflation as justification for the cut. However, Clarida called the U.S. "the best pupil in the class" when comparing growth to other countries.