Fed presidents play down discount hike

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Senior Federal Reserve officials speaking after the central bank's surprise decision last Thursday to lift its discount rate have all downplayed the significance of move, stressing that it did not mean that the world's largest economy was being weaned off accommodative policies.

The discount rate, officially called the primary credit rate, is the rate charged to banks of loans from the central bank's discount windows. The margin between the discount rate and the federal funds rate was cut from 1

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