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IMF chief defends rate hikes after Trump slams 'crazy'Fed


AFP
Nusa Dua, Indonesia
IMF chief Christine Lagarde on Thursday defended central bank rate hikes in a veiled rebuke to Donald Trump after the US president blamed"crazy"Fed policies for contributing to financial market turmoil.
Lagarde spoke as a global market sell-off rolled into Asia following Trump's comments, underscoring the rising financial volatility that the IMF will address at its annual meetings with the World Bank this week in Bali.
Lagarde, 62, said central bank rate increases such as those by the policy-setting US Federal Reserve were justified by fundamentals -- as several central bankers pointed to their need for independence.
"It is clearly a necessary development for those economies that are showing much improved growth, inflation that is picking up... unemployment that is extremely low,"Lagarde told a press briefing in Bali.
"It's inevitable that central banks make the decisions that they make."
An IMF report released on Wednesday said global growth could be at risk if emerging markets deteriorate further or trade tensions escalate.

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