Dimon Breaks With JPMorgan's Economist to Say Fed Will Wait

JPMorgan Chase & Co. Chief Executive Officer Jamie Dimon broke with the prediction of his bank’s top U.S. economist, saying the Federal Reserve probably will hold off Thursday on boosting interest rates.

“I don’t think they’re going to do it,” Dimon, 59, said at an event held by the Detroit Economic Club. While the U.S. economy is strong enough, “it’s not that important if they do it in September, October, November, December.”

U.S. policy makers will conclude a two-day meeting Thursday where they are weighing restrained prices, rising volatility in financial markets and the resilient U.S. labor market. Michael Feroli, New York-based JPMorgan’s chief U.S. economist, has said he leans toward the Fed raising rates at this week’s meeting. The decision will be announced at 2 p.m.

Feroli’s focus is on the labor market, where the jobless rate -- at 5.1 percent in August -- is now roughly equivalent to what most Fed policy makers consider to be full employment.

Prices paid by American households declined in August and the Fed’s preferred gauge of inflation, linked to consumer spending, hasn’t been above the central bank’s 2 percent goal since March 2012.

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