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The Federal Reserve Wednesday said it could keep interest rates unusually low even after the U.S. job market returned to full strength and inflation rose to the central bank's target.The Fed had said since in December 2012 that it would not consider raising short-term rates until the jobless rate dropped to at least 6.5 percent, as long as inflation looked set to remain contained.Of the Fed's 16 policymakers, only one believes it will be appropriate to raise rates this year; 13 expect a first rate hike next year and 2 others see the first rate hike coming in 2016, according to fresh forecasts published Wednesday. But once rate hikes start, Fed officials see slightly sharper increases than they did in December, with rates ending 2015 at 1 percent and ending 2016 at 2.25 percent, according to the median of forecasts. In December, Fed officials expected short-term rates to be just 1.75 percent by the end of 2016 . The new forecasts also show Fed officials see unemployment dropping slightly faster, to between 5.6 percent and 5.9 percent by the end of 2015 .
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