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To much anticipation, the Federal Reserve today voted unanimously to increase its benchmark interest rate by a quarter percent.

It is the first such move since the financial crisis.

“This action marks the end of an extraordinary seven-year period, during which the federal funds rate was held near 0 to support the recovery of the economy from the worst financial crisis and recession since the Great Depression,” said Federal Reserve Chairwoman Janet Yellen.

The unanimous vote is particularly significant as it comes just after some committee members had said publicly that this was not yet the time, Neil Cavuto said this afternoon in Fox Business Network’s all-star coverage.

Critics argue that Janet Yellen may have been somewhat forced in the decision, as her credibility was perceived to be on the line.

Yellen said today that the historic decision “reflects the Committee’s confidence that the economy will continue to strengthen.”

“The economic recovery has clearly come a long way, although it is not yet complete,” she said.

While the rate hike is incremental, “it is a change, and could indicate a change going forward for the Federal Reserve, meaning we could see consecutive rises,” said Sandra Smith.

What else could this mean for you? Watch below for Fox Business Network's smart breaking analysis, and watch Yellen's groundbreaking remarks, above.


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