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Fed to stick to plans for rate hike, balance-sheet selloff this year

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Federal Reserve Chairwoman Janet Yellen doesn’t want to send Wall Street into turmoil with any big surprises this week. Slow and steady is the course.

The Federal Reserve doesn’t want to leave any doubt: The central bank still plans to raise interest rates again this year and start to sell off its vast holdings of Treasurys and mortgage-related bonds. The Fed just plans to take its own sweet time doing so. That’s likely to be the takeaway this week after Chairwoman Janet Yellen and senior Fed officials convene in Washington to chart their course for the rest of 2017. They may tinker with their assessment of inflation after a sharp deceleration recently, but a major course correction is not in the cards. The Federal Open Market Committee decision will come at 2 p.m. Eastern on Wednesday.

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