The Fed’s decision is important if you have a credit card, a savings or retirement account, or want to buy a home or car. It would be the first rate hike in a decade and it has it’s upside and downside, but it wouldn’t be a game changer over night. Here are some things you need to know:
Rates could Increase
Relax. You don’t need to rush to buy a home or get a car loan tomorrow. Interest rates are still low and will remain historically low for quite some time. The Fed sets a target rate for very short-term debt. But that rate also influences interest rates on mortgages, car loans and other big-ticket items. None of which will happen overnight
Your Savings Account could Smile Again
We’ll be the first to admit it, deposit rates have made us cringe the past few years. But that could all change…slowly. It could mean there will be more rate increases in the near future (the next 1-2 years), and that eventually should mean higher interest on your deposits. **Your retirement account sighs in relief**
Stock markets could become more volatile
August was a very volatile month for stocks, and a rate hike could trigger even more volatility in U.S. and overseas stocks. No one knows for sure. Whenever the news suggested the Fed might raise rates this past year, stock markets generally went down, and the opposite happened when economic news suggested a rate hike might be pushed off. The best educated guess is that a rate hike could cause some market volatility at least in the short term.
Or Nothing changes
The Fed has already pushed off this decision twice this year. They may decide to do the same again. In this event, you could expect to keep chugging along with the lowest rates in decades.
We’d love to hear your take on these current events. Continue the conversation in the comments.