Powell's outlook on US rattles markets


WASHINGTON

New Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell delivered a message Tuesday that wasn’t quite what Wall Street had expected: The U.S. economy is doing well, maybe even better than he thought late last year.

Powell emphasized in his first congressional testimony that the central bank plans to raise rates gradually. Nonetheless, his growing optimism about the economy rattled investors. Treasury yields climbed and stocks fell amid fresh speculation that the Fed would accelerate the pace of hikes in its benchmark policy rate this year. The Dow Jones industrial average closed down 299 points.

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