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Fed's Raskin Says Fall in U.S. Unemployment Is Too Slow

Federal Reserve Governor Sarah Bloom Raskin said the U.S. unemployment rate in recent years has fallen at a “disappointingly slow pace.”

“Most unemployment has been cyclical,” or related to the performance of the economy, while “there is a structural element” to the jobless rate as well, Raskin said today at a conference in Philadelphia.

The policy-setting Federal Open Market Committee announced a new round of stimulus yesterday, pledging to buy mortgage bonds until officials sees “sustained improvement” in the job market. The central bank also said it will probably keep near-zero interest rates through at least mid-2015, compared with an earlier expectation of late 2014.

The unemployment rate -- at 8.1 percent in August -- has been stuck above 8 percent since February 2009, when the nation was mired in a recession.

Raskin spoke at the National Conference on Citizenship.

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