BNP Paribas expects four U.S. Fed rate hikes of 50 bps each

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Logo of BNP Paribas on a building in Issy-les-Moulineaux, near Paris

HONG KONG – Analysts at BNP Paribas expect the U.S. Federal Reserve to hike interest rates by 50 basis points (bps) four times in succession, they said on Thursday, pointing to the bank’s resolve to frontload rate tightening due to inflation pressures.

On Wednesday, the U.S. central bank raised its benchmark overnight interest rate by half a percentage point, its biggest jump in 22 years. BNP forecasts three more hikes of the same size at the Fed’s June, July and September meetings, then a shift to 25 bps moves afterwards.

Its chair, Jerome Powell, said policymakers were ready to approve half-percentage-point rate hikes at policy meetings in June and July.

(This story corrects to clarify the forecast of four big rate hikes include Wednesday’s)

(Reporting by Alun John; Editing by Clarence Fernandez)