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Fed hikes rates. Here's what to do now

But with Donald Trump's election victory, the Times said, companies in manufacturing and other industries "have become more confident about the outlook since late past year, at least in part because of hopes that tax cuts and other favorable policies will be coming from the new Trump administration and his party that controls Congress".

Prices for benchmark 10-year Treasuries slipped 7/32 to yield 2.606 percent, from a yield of 2.582 percent late on Friday.

One rate hike won't change the world but higher rates affects millions of Americans. That's because, with the widely-telegraphed rate increase all but baked into expectations, the market's attention is now turning to the projected path of interest rates - that is, how quickly will the Fed raise rates later this year. Another reason not to rush the next hike: the Atlanta Fed's GDPNow indicator has just slipped rather sharply in a matter of weeks from 2.5% for the first quarter to just 0.9%.

The interest rates on auto loans are not determined by what the Federal Reserve does.

Amid mild winter weather across much of the country, residential and commercial construction employers combined added a 58,000 jobs last month, bringing the industry's net payroll growth in the first two months to 98,000 - compared to 155,000 for all of past year.

Norman said the gold market "clearly got itself going into the Fed announcement" and saw good short covering, or unwinding bets that prices will fall in value.

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South Africa wins toss, choose to field against NZ in second test
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"The Fed is likely moving now before worldwide (European elections, Brexit) and domestic uncertainties (the legislative agenda) cloud the picture", says Carl Tannenbaum, chief economist at Northern Trust.

Further rate increases would only be "gradual", the Fed said in its policy statement, with officials sticking to their outlook for two more rate hikes this year and three more in 2018. Before the election, a typical 30-year fixed rate mortgage was 3.5%, according to Freddie Mac. All those can factors can pinch profits.

While markets had fully priced in Wednesday's rate hike, investors had been waiting for clues on the central bank's future monetary policy. It then waited an entire year before raising rates again in December last year.

United States crude fell 0.3 percent to $48.34 a barrel, and touched its lowest point since Nov 30.

President Trump has big plans to spend on overhauling USA infrastructure. The Fed has tried to prop up the economy since the Great Recession with super low interest rates. Trump is promising 4% annual growth. Employers have added jobs for the last 77 straight months, unemployment has edged lower and wage growth has been increasing. But the number of Fed officials who think three rate hikes will be appropriate for 2017 rose from six to nine. But rates on some other loans - notably credit cards, home equity loans and adjustable-rate mortgages - will likely rise soon, though only modestly. That could cool spenders' appetite.



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