Powell: Jobs report was stronger than expected but shows why this will be a long process

Fed Chair Jerome Powell speaks at The Economic Club of Washington

By Michael S. Derby

(Reuters) – Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell said Tuesday very strong jobs data released last week simply affirms that the central bank has some way to go on raising rates.

When it comes to Friday’s release of the January jobs data, “we didn’t expect it to be this strong,” Powell said.

While declining to say whether knowing about the vigor of the data would have affected last week’s 25 basis point rate rise, Powell said the data “shows you why this will be a process that takes a significant period of time,” when it comes to tightening monetary policy.

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(Reporting by Michael S. Derby; Editing by Chizu Nomiyama)