The Federal Reserve trimmed its forecast for U.S. economic growth this year, but kept its 2013 forecast unchanged from September, and expects the unemployment rate to fall faster.
The U.S. central bank cut its forecast for 2012 Gross Domestic Product growth to 1.7-1.8 percent from its previous forecast of 1.7-2.0 percent.
The 2013 growth forecast was retained at 2.3-3.0 percent growth while the forecast for 2014 was trimmed to 3.0-3.5 from 3.0-3.8 and the 2015 forecast trimmed to 3.0-3.7 percent from 3.0-3.8 percent growth.
The unemployment rate this year is expected to end with an average rate of 7.8-7.9 percent in the fourth quarter, down from its previous forecast of 8.0-8.2 percent.
In 2013 the jobless rate should fall to 7.4-7.7 percent, a downwards revision, but remain above 6.8 percent in 2014 before declining to between 6.0 and 6.6 percent in 2015.
The forecast for personal consumption inflation this year was trimmed to 1.6-1.7 percent from 1.7-1.8 percent, but should remain below the Federal Reserve's target of 2.0 percent through 2015.