John C Williams: Rules of three

Remarks by Mr John C Williams, President and Chief Executive Officer of the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, at the Bronx EDC and BICNY's 2024 Regional Economic Outlook, White Plains, New York, 10 January 2024. 

Central bank speech  | 
23 January 2024

As prepared for delivery 

Introduction

Good afternoon, everyone. It's a pleasure to join you today. I'll start by thanking you for your commitment to the economic development of communities across the New York region.

My remarks today will focus on the economic outlook in the United States and how the Federal Reserve's monetary policy actions are helping restore price stability. I'll also share some observations about economic developments closer to home in the New York metropolitan area. Before I go further, I need to give the standard Fed disclaimer that the views I express today are mine alone and do not necessarily reflect those of the Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) or others in the Federal Reserve System.

The Federal Reserve's Mandate

At the Federal Reserve, our work and actions are guided by our dual mandate: to achieve maximum employment and price stability.

When it comes to employment-the first half of the mandate-things are looking very good. The economy added nearly 2.9 million payroll jobs in 2023. The employment-to-population ratio of "prime-age" workers aged 25-54 has regained levels that prevailed in the months before the pandemic. And the national unemployment rate has been at or below 4 percent for two straight years now, the longest such stretch in over five decades. The current unemployment rate of 3.7 percent is in line with my 3-3/4 percent estimate for the unemployment rate that is likely to prevail over the longer run.