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Published: Tuesday, 3/22/2005

<font face='verdana' size='1' color =#CC0000><b> * New * </b></font> Federal Reserve delivers seventh quarter-point interest rate increase

WASHINGTON The Federal Reserve today pushed a key interest rate up by a quarter-point to 2.75 percent as it continued its campaign to gradually nudge rates high enough to make sure that a rebounding economy does not trigger unwanted inflation.

The increase in the federal funds rate, the interest that banks charge each other, marked the seventh time the central bank has pushed rates higher since it started its current credit tightening campaign last June. At that time, the funds rate stood at a 46-year low of 1 percent.

The Fed kept language that it has used with every rate increase, saying that future rate hikes would occur at a pace that is likely to be measured, language seen as indicating continued quarter-point moves at the central bank s regular meetings.

Read more in later editions of The Blade and toledoblade.com.

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