February 20, 2007 / 4:51 PM / 12 years ago

Fed's Bies say U.S. at full employment

DURHAM, N.C., Feb 20 (Reuters) - Federal Reserve Board Governor Susan Bies said on Tuesday that the U.S. economy was effectively running at full employment levels.

“We’re basically running at full employment” Bies said after addressing an audience at Duke University’s Fuqua School of Business.

Policy makers monitor employment levels closely for fear that wages may rise rapidly if companies have difficulty finding employees to hire, potentially fueling inflation.

Bies said it could take as long as two years for the excess inventory in housing to be drawn down. She also said that the housing sector should act as less of a drag on growth this year than it was in 2006.

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